The end of the summer is fast approaching, but don’t get overwhelmed! Instead, focus on how you can foster happiness in your classroom and start the year off on a bright note. Here are some ideas to help you decrease stress and make this year the best one yet.
Plan it Out
Before you head back into the classroom, take some time at home to plan out what your focus will be this year. I like to draw out my classroom layout and plan my displays before I get into the school. This way I am not overwhelmed with PD meetings and catching up with coworkers while trying to come up with my classroom setup. It will already be done, and I will just need to hang things up based on my plan.
It also makes a big difference to figure out what your first week of school activities will be ahead of time. Sometimes, you can drop off materials to be copied before the year even begins. You will beat the copying rush and have another thing off of your plate. Planning on your couch with coffee and your favorite show playing definitely beats the back-to-school frenzy that happens when we try to do too much during pre-planning week.
Find You Time
As you start to get your schedules for the new year, look for you time. You may be saying, “There is no me time on my schedule, only PDs and lunch.” I want to share the magic of the solo lunch. Fight the urge to eat in the normally negative teacher’s lounge and take at least a few days per week to eat alone. This is time to listen to your favorite music, read a book, or just eat in peace. You will see how quickly you will fall in love with the silence and what it does to your peace of mind. Try it out and thank me later!
Make a goal right now to make yourself a priority this year. Self-care is so important, and with the demands of back-to-school, we often find ourselves forgetting about our hobbies and other obligations because we feel school needs 100 percent of us. If you do not take care of yourself, it is impossible to take care of anything else.
Set a time you will leave each day and stick to it. Find something you can do for yourself each day. Maybe it is going for a walk, journaling, or hosting a movie night. This is not to say that some days you won’t have to stay at work a bit longer, but do not fall into the trap of paperwork overload! Put yourself on your checklist of things to take care of, and watch how everything else will fall into place.
What are your favorite tips for starting the school year off right? Share them below!