This strategy is for the very beginning of community building for the new year and away for current students to "pass the wand" to the new students.
Each current student writes a letter to an incoming student for the next school year. The letter should include a sentence welcoming the new student to the class, one or two sentences about projects and activities that were done this year, and perhaps a sentence on their favorite thing in the classroom.
Students should use the formal letter writing format. Each letter should begin with "Dear...." and end with "Your Friend" or "Sincerely Yours".
Welcome to room 103.
This is such an exciting class to be in. This year we studied islands and got to make volcanoes. We also studied Social Justice. We did a play based on the Montgomery Boycott. You probably don't know what that is yet, but you will.
My favorite thing in the classroom is the art area. We get to use clay, paints, markers and other neat stuff.
I hope you have as much fun as me in room 103.
You may not have a class list for next September and therefore you cannot identify to whom each letter is to be addressed to. So, just have the students write "Dear" and leave a blank, which you will fill in later.
Two weeks before school begins, send one of these letters and a welcoming letter from you to each of your new students. (refer to Daily Assignment #1) This, of course, will require you to find a save place for the letters over the summer and to remember where you put them.