The summer holidays are drawing to a close and the first day back to school is quickly approaching. Just when you had got to grips with last year’s class and knowing everything there was to know about every single learner, it was already time to say “goodbye”.
With last year already beginning to feel like a distant memory, the new term looms ahead. Let’s make 2016/17 the best year yet! We’ve handpicked our top tips that we thought would fill you in on how to prepare for the first day of school.
First impressions count
Getting to know a new class can be daunting – but it doesn’t need to be. Use the first few days back at school to focus on establishing a good rapport with your learners, helping to set the tone for the rest of the year.
Take this time to build respect within your class and develop expectations, it’s important for your class to know exactly what is expected of them and don’t forget to smile.
Remember our Classroom Rules Sheet which can help you set essential rules too!
Planning is key
The first day back is always the hardest. Take this time to let you and your class adjust to being back at school. Don’t leave lesson planning to the last minute; build up a resource bank throughout the year, there are so many free lesson resources out there so don’t feel as though you have to reinvent the wheel.
Manage your workload
As a teacher it’s so important to learn to say no. Work can feel never-ending, there’s always something else which could be done but there’s never enough time to do it. Prioritising is key. Write a to-do list and stick to it – limit checking your emails to twice a day and remember you’re not a super human!
Get to know your class
Each and every child is different, so make sure you’re prepared for their individual needs. Prepare well in advance by discovering where each learner is academically, allowing you to differentiate your lessons accordingly and curb any behaviour concerns. This is a great way to establish a good rapport immediately with your class, helping you to get off on the right foot as it shows that you have taken the time to get to know their needs.
Don’t forget that you can use our fantastic Back to School Pack – it has loads of free resources to help you get to know your class.
Hindsight is a wonderful thing and is the fundamental learning tool. Did things not go quite to plan last year? Could they have gone better? Did you spend too much time working instead of socialising? Did you spend too many evenings working way into the night? Treat the first day back to school as a clean slate and learn from past mistakes and evaluate whether there are any other ways that you could change the way you work to make your workload more manageable.