Jitter Juice: A How To Guide

When I made the move to Second Grade, I knew I had to make some changes to my first day of school routine.  I said good-bye to Chester and his Kissing Hand and hello to First Day Jitters.  

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I wanted to turn my first read aloud into an event that would leave my class excited about Second Grade.  I did a little googling and discovered Jitter Juice.  There were a lot of recipes for how to make Jitter Juice but all of them were missing…. something. I wanted to up the wow factor and found the perfect thing….

Yes, the tiny little candies that pop in your mouth. 

Here is my recipe for how to make Jitter Juice.

Supplies and Ingredients

Before reading prep:
  •   Pour soda into cups
  •   Have Pop Rocks ready- I used to give students a sprinkle of Pop Rocks but quickly realized it was much easier to just give them all their own pouch.  If you want to give less than the whole pouch, I recommend separating it out ahead of time.  Cupcake liners work really well for this.

When I read the story, these are the things we talk about:

·       Emotions: How did you feel about the first day of school? How do you feel now that you are here? Have your feelings changed any?

·       Teacher: Did you expect Sarah Jane Hartwell to be the teacher? Why was she nervous about the first day of school?

·       Personal Emotions: I talk about how I feel lots of emotions about the first day of school.  I’m excited because I love teaching and love being around kids. I’m nervous because I am meeting all new kids and I worry about things like what if they don’t like me.  I’m also a little sad because I miss my kids from the previous year. 

After reading, I give students a cup of soda and a bag of Pop Rocks.  I tell them the Pop Rocks are their jitters or nerves and the soda is their body.  When they put the Pop Rocks go into the soda, there will be lots of bubbles and it might be uncomfortable.  As we get to know each other and settle into classroom life, our emotions start to settle, just like the Pop Rocks stop popping and settle.

Students have loved it every year. When we do our end of the year memories, at least one person brings up making Jitter Juice on the first day of school.

What is your favorite First Day of School activity?

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