How Teachers Can Get Ready For Back To School
Being a teacher is a lot of hard work, and when you have time off, you’ll probably want to completely decompress and unwind – after all, a stressed and exhausted teacher isn’t going to be a good role model for the kids in your class.
However, there will come a point after you’ve relaxed and unwound when you’ll need to start thinking about heading back to the classroom. There are certain things you’ll want to get ready for going back to school so you can start the new year or semester in the right way, helping your students learn and grow in confidence. With that in mind, here are some of the things you’ll want to do to get ready for back to school. Read on to find out more.
Most of the time, you’ll want to be looking forward – that’s where the future is, after all. However, when you’re getting ready to head back to school after a break, looking back isn’t a bad idea at all. It can help you determine what you need to do in the upcoming weeks to help your students in the right way, and it will give you a good start when it comes to working out what lessons you need to give.
Think about what worked well last term and what you could improve to give the kids in your class more information or make them more engaged – it’s only by looking at things objectively (and after some time has passed) that can give you the details you’re looking for when it comes to making these important changes, so don’t just assume you can continue in the way you did before – you might need to make some tweaks.
Update Your Lesson Plans
The world of teaching is always changing as new ideas, rules, and even technology comes out to make things easier (ideally) and more interesting – and to give kids the best education possible. It could be that your lesson plans need to be updated in light of this, so it’s a good idea to carefully go through them and see what needs to be changed. You might want to keep some exactly as they are, and others might need to be totally scrapped so you can start again with new ideas in place.
If that sounds like a lot of work, don’t worry – there are plenty of resources around you to help you get it right. You can look online for tips on how to create lesson plans that your students will enjoy, and that will impart all the information you need to give them, and by using that information, you’ll find you’re able to come up with new and exciting ideas that the children are going to love and, crucially, that you’ll enjoy teaching.
Organize Your Classroom
It’s a good idea (and it might even be mandatory, depending on where you work and what your boss says) to go into your classroom at least a couple of days before the kids come back from vacation. In this way, you can make sure it’s set up in exactly the way you want, and that you have all the resources you need to start right away. It wouldn’t be a good look to have everyone file in and then not have anything you need to actually give a lesson on the first day!
That’s why going in a few days early and getting things ready makes so much sense. You can put resources up on the walls, like posters with information about what you’re going to teach that term, and you can make your desk and desk drawers tidy, so you instantly know where everything is. You can even make welcome-back gifts for the kids, or decorate their pegs or desks – it’s a nice touch that will help them to settle back into learning (and have a positive opinion of you, which is always going to help), and if you allow enough time, you can definitely do it.
Create A Communication Plan
A good teacher knows that they need to hear feedback and engagement from their students. If they don’t, how will they know the lessons are working? How will they know the children are learning and not just sitting in class wishing for it to end?
So when you’re getting ready to go back to school, think about creating a communication plan that allows your students to let you know how they’re doing and even what’s working and what isn’t. It’s crucial you let the kids know that they can come to you at any time with queries, ideas, and feedback, and giving them a variety of ways to do that helps massively. You can give them your school email address (not your personal one), for example, or perhaps have a suggestion box on your desk. You can make time during recess and lunch to be around if people need to speak to you, and so on.
Of course, it’s not just a case of gathering feedback and listening to what the kids have to say; you also need to act on the information if you need to. If someone comes to you for help, then you’ll need to work out how to help them (this could help with a lesson, or it might be something else that they trust you to hear), and the children need to know that you’re taking what they say on board. This will help them feel more confident in making suggestions and coming to you when they need assistance, ensuring that you can give them that extra boost and they get the help they’re looking for.
Take Care Of Yourself
As we said at the start, teaching is hard work, and by the end of the semester, you’re sure to be tired. However, to stop yourself from being utterly exhausted and potentially even burned out, you’ll need to take good care of yourself, and you can put this into practice right from the start.
Things you can do include eating healthily, exercising regularly, making time for hobbies, getting enough sleep, and relaxing as much as possible. Do all of this, and you’ll be a better teacher and a happier human.
Images courtesy of Pixabay, UnSplash, and Pexels.
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