Article

End of the Day: First Day Goofs

From botching students' names to forgetting their own, teachers tell us their favority first-day fiascos.

  • Grades: PreK–K, 1–2, 3–5, 6–8

Double Vision
Several years ago I helped to hire a brand-new first-grade teacher whom I would be mentoring. On her very first day, we showed up wearing the exact same outfit, I kid you not. I have the photo to prove it. 
Jennifer A.

i’m Mrs. X
The first day of my first year, I forgot to tell the kids my name. I only remembered when someone asked me at dismissal.
Rosa J.

Turning the Tables
My first year teaching, one of my third grader’s parents accompanied him to school just to tell me to expect bad behavior from her son. She said that she would probably be hearing from me every day, so she wanted to introduce herself. The color probably drained from my face. The child ended up being very well behaved all year after I told him it would be more fun to prove his mom wrong than to prove her right.
Angela B.

Wrong Number
I found out that I was teaching a different grade on the first day of school!
Debbie A.

Early Expulsion
During the first class of the first day of school, one of my students turned around and threw up all over the floor. Fun day.
Heather B.

Let’s (Not) Do Lunch
On the first day of school, we discuss why we have rules. I asked my kindergarten class if they knew any good rules, and the cutest little girl raised her hand and said, “Never, ever bite the teacher.” Oh! Yes, that is a good rule!
Tammy M.

Land Grab
At recess, we arrived in the school yard to find that a very large wild turkey had already set up camp! It was not interested in going away, either.
F. F.

You Don’t Say
Mispronouncing names is a goody every year!
Scott W.

Here Comes Trouble
One year I introduced myself to a first grader and asked his name. He replied, “Trouble ... Big Trouble.” It turns out he wasn’t. Whew!
Sabrina P.

Marco Polo
One kid started digging in the sandpit because his mom told him to dig a hole to China.
Donna D.

Reelin’ in the Years
My first day of school began with a very excited little girl entering the room and announcing, “My grandma went to high school with you, so I know how old you are.” Too funny! Yes, I’ve been teaching a while.
Brenda G. 

  • Subjects:
    Teacher Tips and Strategies
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