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I KNOW I’m not the only crazy out there that is ALREADY thinking about going back. That’s right. Back. To. School. I love my summer, but I also love new pencils, getting organized, and planning some fun back to school activities!!! 

Annnnnnnnd…..who doesn’t love seeing their own name on printed stuff?! It looks fancy-schmancy and all professional. I, for one, am all ABOUT my own name. Ha! I never really loved the name Emily until, well, recently. But, alas, it’s my name and I love seeing it on things.

How about a whole BUNCH of centers dedicated to nothing but your kiddos’ names? I have 10 of them for the first few weeks of school. I used these centers last year and we loved them. They were perfect for demonstrating my center expectations, how to use materials, and even got demonstrating write the room checked off my list for me! Check out how we used these in my classroom below: 
{Lack of classroom pictures is completely unacceptable and I will be working on that this year. Eeek.} 

1. Name Write the Room -I have 2 versions – one for class photos and one for just names. I usually start with the photos and then I retire the pictures and just use their names, once they start getting used to seeing everyone’s name printed.

2. Name Memory – I print out my little cards and glue/laminate their picture on the cards. A match is made when they match the name to the correct picture.

3. Roll a Friend – This easy peasy activity is meant for getting used to writing everyone’s name. Just type in the names of a few friends and let ’em roll.

4. Play Dough Mats – Another easy one. I used a fun bubble font and let them go to town with play dough.

5. Name Tracers – Easy, editable name handwriting practice.

6. Name Puzzles – type in the name, cut them into fun pieces and let them sort them all out. I only gave about 4-5 puzzle for each group. Didn’t want to confuse my sweeties too much on the first week. Ha!

7. Name Compare – May as well introduce the Venn Diagram early — we use it all the time in Kindergarten!! I just provided magnetic letters and typed in 2 names to compare.

8. Name Pocket Chart – A fun way to get the kiddos used to using the pocket chart. We  usually focus on a few letters at a time. They just sort the letters into columns – in their name or not in their name. They take turns using their own name.

9. Read It, Build It, Write It – just a fun mat for students to read their name, build it with letters, and then practice writing it.

10. Sensory Bin – We LOVE our sensory bin. I fill mine up with all sorts of different things throughout the year. For this easy activity – I have them write their name at the top of the mat and then hunt for letters {you can use magnetic letters or I have included letters in this packet for you to print and laminate}  — and they sort them according to whether or not the letter is in their name.

I loved these centers SO MUCH that I created them to share. All of these fun centers described here are 100% customizable. There are some centers that require you to add the students’ pictures, but you can use these at different times so that you don’t have to have more than one copy of pictures. Annnd, there are center options that allow you to bypass using pictures altogether, if you prefer. You will need to have Adobe READER {NOT Acrobat} to edit them. It’s free. Just click here to get it. I included a very detailed explanation on how to edit the text, too. These centers are PERFECT to use in the first few weeks when you are establishing expectations for centers. It also allows your kiddos to get to know each other AND recognize their name spelling. Win-win-win. Click here to view these centers in my shop!


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