Teachers, this one is for you! Summer has really gone by in a flash, hasn’t it? Now you probably see back-to-school planograms everywhere you go, from the supermarket to the department stores advertising different deals and storewide sales. This usually elicits one of two responses: panic because time has run out or relief because you want to get back to it.
We see both sides for several reasons, but to make things easier, we wanted to write a quick guide on back-to-school reminders that you can refer to as classes get closer.
Whether you’re a new teacher or on the brink of retirement, returning to school is a little different by default than what the incoming students experience. You’re likely more focused on replenishing the communal classroom materials, ensuring that your lesson plans are still up to date, and organizing your classroom the way you want to. Maybe you want to challenge yourself to match and memorize students’ names and faces using your school software – or maybe not.
From now on, when you return to school each year, you’ll likely be more conscious of space and hygiene when arranging and stocking your classroom thanks to recent events. You may opt for individual study spaces over shared tables or provide ample cleaning materials to wipe down surfaces more regularly than in years past.
You also might want to take a few minutes to review your classroom rules and note if any need updating, though this can sometimes be an ongoing process rather than an annual one, depending on what goes on during each school year.
The Week(s) Before
You can leave things like icebreaker activities, get-to-know-you games, last-minute syllabi, calendar reviewing, start-of-year lesson plans, and other easy (but essential) tasks for the week before school starts.
You can also leave a reasonable amount of organization to the week before, depending on the age group, class size, and subject(s). Of course, if you’re juggling different grades and multiple subjects, you might want a bit of extra time to plan however you see fit, but here are a few organizational things you can still wait to take care of:
- Any forms or paperwork you’re sending home with students (especially emergency contact forms)
- Labeling your belongings (classroom library books, textbooks, supplies, materials, etc.)
- Seating charts or DIY student nameplates for the first few weeks
- Organizing your files and desk area (lesson plans, notes, grade book)
- Creating or ensuring your substitute folders and resources are up to date
The Night Before
It’s time to say goodbye to hitting snooze and instead opting to set a few safety alarms to make sure you’re to school on time (if not a little early!).
Since you’ve spent the last few days and weeks doing the larger-scale prep work, now you can focus on micromanaging a little bit: planning the order of operations for the first day. You can sketch out a schedule that you’d like to follow, budgeting time to explain classroom policies, review summer activities, discuss expectations, outline the syllabus, and of course, get to know your students for the year. Don’t stress about it if planning things out like that isn’t your style; it’s totally okay to go with the flow and simply get a feel for what your class will be.
Don’t Forget Your School Spiritwear!
A quick way to get students a little more comfortable is to show a bit of school pride. If you’re happy and excited to be there on day 1, that energy will be apparent, and hopefully, that will make your students and those around you feel the same. A little school pride on your sleeve can help your students feel a sense of pride for their school, the work they do, and their behavior, ultimately facilitating that bond between students and their grade-school experience.
Is that too optimistic? We don’t think so. Years down the line, students won’t look back and remember individual lessons or lunch menus, but they’ll remember moments, feelings, and people. There’s nothing quite like feeling like you belong at your school, from all the pep rallies, performances, games, events, competitions, fundraisers, field trips, all culminating at the graduation ceremony at the end of the tunnel. That’s the heart of school pride, and it all starts with school spiritwear.
Show your school pride with 1st Place Spiritwear.