So is it me, or did summer just fly by? I wanted to share some Teacher Back to School Tips and Activities for the 1st Week of School. I know many are headed back or already in the classroom mode. Back to school is so hectic and sometimes we forget some of the small details, or need ideas for what to do with our kiddos! So I have gathered a few things to help you. We have all heard the saying there is “No Tired.. like Back to School Tired” and it is without a doubt true! So do not forget with all the hustle to take some time to relax and try to enjoy it, because it will fly! Just know I am rooting for you- I have a resource library of freebies to help you monthly, so make sure you check it out to gather some helpful tools! Read on to know my top back to school tips and activities
Back to School Tips and Ideas
Tip#1: Think and jot out your room set up and decor: I usually find out my classroom area and draw it out setting it up how I want it to look. Now your Class Decor is probably already picked out [if not you can grab some easy print and go decor off TPT, I try to personalize mine every year], and laminated [do this so you can reuse again!]. Clean your room [cabinets, desk, your personal areas- because it will not be thoroughly cleaned until next summer].
Tip #2: Be prepared, with labeling and organizing: Regardless if you are into the super cutesy stuff and have everything Pinterest perfect or just labeled by hand – just plan to have it all labeled! This includes: marker, crayon tubs, notebooks, desks [student desk tags], tables, books, carts, turn in folders. Have it all set up before Meet the Teacher Night and First Day of School. This way you are NOT scrambling the 1st day of school trying to organize! I truly felt prepared the 1st day by doing this ahead of time! This is my favorite go to packet for the first week. You can find so many different themes and grade levels:
Tip #3: Plan out your entire first day by the hour! You cannot wing the first day at all! You need to have a plan! Here is an example of my first day schedule:
- Kids enter [I greet each at door and show them to the direction of their seats]
- School Announcements, kids trickle in the door thoughout first 30 minutes.
- I have a packet of ALL ABOUT ME Activities or Back to School Activities that help them get started as I am collecting supplies, forms, and greeting kids.
- Usually within the first 30 minutes I pull all kids down to meeting area. I introduce myself using my anchor chart that I prepare beforehand. This helps me stay focused by lets my kids see a visual and hear me speak. I also provide pictures so they can see my family, vacation pictures, and etc.
- Next we get in a circle and do a quick ice breaker activity. This helps my students see faces, names, etc, This will last 30 minutes.
- We go through LUNCH NUMBERS, and CLASSROOM/ SCHOOL RULES. [this takes the longest and we will revisit everyday the first week]. This is when I introduce Student Incentive Tags , and other positive reinforcements we will use in our classroom.
- Typically we have LARGE GROUP time now. So this gives me a break to get more organized and paperwork in order.
- Kids return and we do another FUN ACTIVITY. This year I am LOVING the ALL ABOUT ME COLOR Teach-Go Pennant . These are perfect to display the first week or so on our bulletin boards.
- We practice more procedures and then head to lunch/recess. During this time my team and I have a plan that we talk to ALL THE STUDENTS about. This way we have consistent expectations throughout the grade level! It is important to have this as a team.
- We come back in to the classroom and I usually read a 1st day of School Book, here are some of my favorites:
11. By now the day is almost over, so we go over dismissal and practice this. Before practicing, I have received notification of how each kid is going home. Our big priority is making sure all our students arrive home safely!
Back to School Tip: Planning your day hour by hour will truly help you out!
Tip #4: This one is simple! Wear comfortable clothes and SHOES! Yes, you want to look cute and picture perfect, but be comfortable! Our schools are great in my district because we are allowed to wear jeans and the school shirts. It is easy because then students know who to recognize in case of an emergency, etc. Especially our littlest friends who are lost the first few days!
Tips #5: Stay after the 1st day, plan to! Organize the rest of your stuff. Put things away. Be prepared for Day #2 which many times we get rolling with classroom lessons, etc. Have all your students contact information ready. I usually chat with my coworkers a bit to see how the day went. Sometimes I try hang up anything that is completed and ready for my bulletin board. My goal is to leave my room tidy so that I can enter in the morning and take care of anything that needs immediate attention, trust me…there is something that’ll pop up!
The Final & Biggest Back to School Tip I have for you is, to enjoy every moment. Take time to relax and refresh! Do not overwhelm yourself! If you need anything reach out for help and I am here as well! Contact me, I have been around for a bit so I can always help! Many blessings as you start your new year!
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