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Getting-to-Know-You Crossword Puzzle



  • Arts & Humanities
    --Language Arts


  • K-2
  • 3-5
  • 6-8
  • 9-12

Brief Description

A class crossword puzzle makes a great back-to-school activity or bulletin board.



  • share unique information about themselves.
  • listen as others share information about themselves.
  • solve a crossword puzzle based on clues that come from the information they shared.


crossword puzzle, puzzle, icebreaker, back to school, back-to-school, bulletin board

Materials Needed

  • information about each of your students
  • an online crossword-puzzle tool [links provided] or crossword-puzzle making software

Lesson Plan

This is a fun activity for the second day of school, or anytime. Students solve a crossword puzzle that includes clues about the students in the class.

At the start of the year, you often do icebreaker activities that help you and your students get to know one another. As you do those activities this year, take notes about some of the unique things you learn about each student. You will use those unique characteristics as clues for creating a crossword puzzle that has each student's name in it.

Once you have compiled a list a clues -- one clue per student -- you are ready to create the crossword puzzle grid. Use one of the following online tools to create a crossword puzzle that includes the first names of each of your students.

  • PuzzleMaker
  • Instant Online Crossword Puzzle Maker
  • Create a Crossword Puzzle On-Line
  • In each of the puzzle makers above, you will type in the student's name followed by the clue that relates to that student. If you have two or more students with the same name, you might include their last initials (for example, JenniferB, JenniferM). In order to fit all of your students' names in a puzzle, you might need to submit the puzzle clues more than once or expand the dimensions of the puzzle.

    Share the puzzle you have created with students. If you use it on the second day of school (based on information students shared on the first day), the students' abilities to solve the puzzle will be a good indicator of the level of their listening comprehension skills.

    Extension Activity
    Transform the crossword puzzle you created into a giant crossword puzzle bulletin board under a clever heading such as Our Class Has a Clue, We Fit Together, or Working Together to Solve Problems.


    How well did students listen when their classmates shared information about themselves? Which students successfully completed the crossword puzzle?

    Lesson Plan Source

    Education World

    National Standards

    Submitted By

    Gary Hopkins

    LANGUAGE ARTS: English
    GRADES K - 12
    NL-ENG.K-12.12 Applying Language Skills

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    Copyright © 2005 Education World

    This lesson was originally posted on 08/29/2005