4 Teacher Tips for the First Day of School

August 11, 2017


In the Classroom

The first day of school countdown is already on. Once you’ve decorated the classroom, worked on lesson plans, and gathered all of your room supplies, it’s time to shift gears and think about how you can get yourself into the back to school mindset.

Here are several ways you can feel confident going into the first day of school:

1. Find a mentor.

Whether you’re teaching a new grade, transferring to a new school, or just admire someone you work closely with, it’s important to find a mentor you can turn to throughout the school year. A mentor can be a great sounding board to discuss classroom issues or goals, and it’s always comforting to know that you have someone you can confide in. On the flip side, if you’re looking to be a mentor, reach out to others at the start of the school year and make them feel welcomed and supported. Remember, you’re all in it together!

2. Take a breather.

Between meeting new students (and parents!) and getting ready to take on Back to School Night, you’re bound to have a full plate the first few weeks of school. Take a breather once the school day wraps up by doing an activity like yoga, zumba, or going for a walk. It will help you reset and come back to work the next day with an open mind. The benefits go beyond just getting a good workout and can even help reduce stress and burnout.

3. Establish boundaries between work and home.

It’s easy to become tied to your classroom, but make sure you establish good work-life balance practices in the beginning of the school year. Prevent yourself from taking work home by staying organized and keeping a detailed to-do list of tasks and responsibilities you’ll need to prepare for the week. Tackle these during planning periods, or delegate tasks to a teaching assistant to make the most of your time in the classroom. If it becomes necessary to take work home, create a designated home office or space where you can grade papers or work on lesson plans.

4. It’s OK to say “no thanks”!

It’s easy to want to raise your hand for everything, from committee leader, field trip organizer, and grade level representative, to name a few. However, it’s important to become comfortable with simply saying no. Don’t feel pressured to take on the responsibility until you evaluate your schedule and family commitments. Always remember that you can volunteer again the next time an opportunity presents itself, and make sure to convey that to your team.

Teachers, tell us what you think! What makes you feel confident going into the first day of school?

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