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Oct 19, 2023 5 min read

First-Day-of-Preschool Activities for Teachers 

Leah Woodbury By: Leah Woodbury
mother gets her preschooler ready for the first day of school

The first day of preschool is a big deal!  And finding first day of preschool activities can be difficult. With careful planning, engaging activities and a nurturing environment, this day can lay the foundation for a lifelong love of learning and exploration.

Let’s take a look at some activities and crafts to ensure a smooth and engaging introduction to the world of early education!

Goals for the First Day of Preschool

This is your time to build a foundation for growth. The initial day of preschool sets the tone for the entire academic year. 

Some key goals for this important day include:

  • Creating a Comfortable Environment: Establishing a welcoming and nurturing atmosphere that helps the children feel secure and encourages them to explore their new surroundings
  • Encouraging Social Interaction: Promoting activities that foster social interaction among the children, aiding in the development of communication skills and the formation of early friendships
  • Introducing Basic Classroom Rules: Implementing simple, easy-to-understand rules that lay the foundation for discipline and respect within the classroom
  • Promoting Independence: Encouraging self-reliance and independence among the students through engaging and age-appropriate activities

Crafts for the First Day of Preschool

a preschooler smiles while showing rainbow-painted hands to the camera

Craft activities not only encourage creativity but also help develop fine motor skills in young children.

On the first day of school, consider simple crafts like creating handprint animals, making friendship bracelets or painting with fingers to stimulate the little ones’ imagination and artistic expression.

One idea for a first day of school craft is making “my first day” photo frames using colorful cardstock and simple decorations. This not only allows the children to express their creativity but also serves as a keepsake for both the children and their families to cherish in the years to come.

Crayola shared a fun photo-prop frame craft to mark the first day of preschool. Here are the supplies you’ll need:

Use markers to decorate wooden numbers and letters with bright patterns and colors for your photo frame. Then attach the wooden shapes with gluelue to spell out “1st Day of” at the top of the frame. Along the bottom, glue a small chalkboard to the frame.

Add a splash of sparkle and fun by swirling and dotting the frame with glitter glue and write the word preschool on the chalkboard with chalk.

And check out this idea from popular blogger Sarah Chesworth with activities for the first day of preschool … she suggests using a printable journal is just for preschool students to use during their first week of school!

Sarah says it’s “super simple and supports students drawing pictures to share their thoughts and ideas rather than words,” and suggests this preschool printable journal that features over 10 different pages to print and choose from.

She recommends choosing one page a day for students to complete during writing time and to remember that drawing is writing too!

Incorporating games into the first day of preschool can facilitate learning in a fun and interactive way. Games like Simon Says, Red Light, Green Light and musical chairs not only promote physical activity but also encourage listening skills and the ability to follow simple instructions.

First Day of Preschool Activities for 3-Year-Olds

for kips playing together at a sensory table on the first day of school

For 3-year-olds, the first day of school should include activities that introduce them to basic concepts.

Activities like color sorting, simple shape recognition and sensory play with sand, water or kinetic sand can be both educational and entertaining for this age group.

And check out this fall-themed pumpkin-bowling lesson for preschoolers that focuses on physical development!

First Day of Preschool Activities for 4-Year-Olds

These activities should build upon previous knowledge. Four-year-olds are often more prepared for slightly advanced activities. 

Consider introducing activities like counting games, alphabet recognition exercises and basic storytelling to stimulate their cognitive abilities and prepare them for further learning.

How an Early Childhood Curriculum Can Help!

For teachers, the first day of preschool is an opportunity to foster a love for learning. Creating a warm and inviting classroom environment, establishing clear routines, and setting a positive tone through enthusiastic interactions can contribute significantly to the overall success of the school year.

By incorporating age-appropriate activities, crafts and games, teachers can ensure that the first day of preschool is not only educational but also a fun and memorable experience for every child.

Procare Early Learning powered by Learning Beyond Paper is an all-digital early childhood curriculum specifically designed to meet the unique needs of educating children from infancy through pre-kindergarten.  

The curriculum is embedded into Procare, making it easier and less time-consuming for busy teachers and administrators to provide high-quality education. 

With Procare Early Learning powered by Learning Beyond Paper, child care centers can: 

  •   Equip teachers with state-of-the-art online curriculum at their fingertips
  •   Dramatically reduce the amount of time spent on lesson planning each week
  •   Offer children a high-quality, developmentally appropriate curriculum
  •   Save money with this cost-efficient solution that’s integrated with Procare

This curriculum can be used in ALL child care center classrooms, with 52 weeks of lesson plans and more than 4,000 daily activities for infants, toddlers, preschoolers and pre-kindergarteners.  Learning areas include STEAM, language and literacy, physical development, cognitive, music and movement as well as interactive reading. Plus, teachers get tips and tools they can use in real time!

Procare is the only solution that can deliver the entire early childhood education ecosystem — lesson planning, lesson delivery within the classroom as well as assessment and parent engagement. Being able to do all of these with one platform simplifies classroom management and planning! 

How much time and money could your child care center save using a digital curriculum designed for young learners? Enter your number of staff, number of students and type of program into our online calculator to learn your potential savings!

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Calculate your potential cost and time savings by using Procare’s all-in-one child care management software. All we will need from you is some information about your child care location*: Calculate your potential cost and time savings by using Procare’s secure and effortless child care payment processing. All we will need from you is some information about your child care location*: Calculate your potential cost and time savings by using Procare’s classroom management. All we will need from you is some information about your child care location*:

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* Our data model is based on our experience working with over 100,000 child care centers, before and after school programs and youth organizations since 1992.

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The cost and time savings shown here are what the Procare all-in-one solution will help you save at your child care organization. Fill out the form below to see the full breakdown.

We understand that smaller centers and in-home daycare providers are operating on a tight budget, and that is why we provide all these features for the affordable price of just $25 per month. Let us handle the business of child care so you can get back to caring for your children.

To learn more about Procare home version, click below.

*Please note that the report you see only factors in cost and time savings for the in-home solution features. For Procare home version users that are interested in seeing how they can benefit from Procare’s full suite of capabilities, contact us today to speak to a Procare representative.​ *Please note that the report you see only factors in cost and time savings for the in-home solution features. For Procare home version users that are interested in seeing how they can benefit from Procare’s full suite of capabilities, contact us today to speak to a Procare representative. *Please note that the classroom management functionality is not available for in-home users. For Procare home version users that are interested in seeing how they can benefit from Procare’s full suite of capabilities, contact us today to speak to a Procare representative.

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For over 30 years, Procare Solutions has helped child care businesses big and small tackle their biggest operational challenges.

From contactless check-in, attendance tracking and staff management to family engagement, tuition collection and extensive reporting, we have the solutions that child care professionals want most.

More than 37,000 child care businesses choose Procare because we give them everything they need to focus on what they love—providing amazing experiences to the children in their care.

Our data model is based on our experience working with over 100,000 child care centers, before and after school programs and youth organizations since 1992.

Learn more at procaresolutions.com

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Leah Woodbury

Leah Woodbury is the head of content at Procare Solutions. Her job includes writing about topics that matter to child care professionals and finding ways to help them do their important work. She’s a mom of two who loves getting updates about what her preschooler is doing during the day via the Procare child care mobile app!

Leah Woodbury