Here we go, let's take it all in! 5 awesome tips to help get our years off on the right foot!
- Get Organized!
No, I don't mean get out your pots and pans and organize your kitchen cabinets! Take a good look at your classroom. What is/are the areas that drive you the most BONKERS? Is it your centers area? Or maybe your library! Mine was always my desk.. Maybe it's not an area of your room, but instead your files or your plans. Take some time to reflect on how the year has gone so far and find 1-2 areas that you can better organize. Take one day over your break or before you go back and get those areas functioning better for you! If you take the time to do it right, now, then you'll be happier once school's back in session and that area isn't driving you crazy any more! And since it IS the end of the year, you know all of the stores are having sales on their organizational containers - if that doesn't entice you, I don't know what will! ;)
The loom of Sunday night planning fiasco's are coming, but they don't HAVE to be! Get in front of your planning while you're ahead! Take your school's pacing guide, plant yourself at your desk or on your couch with some Netflix and start planning ahead in the areas of your weeks that you can. You know you're always going to have spelling, start getting those ideas written down now! And what about your centers? You have them every week too! You can get those filled in weeks in advance to help save you some time! I realize some things can't be planned in advance due to needing data, etc. But there are many definite areas in which you can get a jump start and save you much valuable Sunday night time!
3. Set Some Goals!
You may or may not already have your New Year's Resolutions planned out or written down. But what do your classroom or teaching goals look like? Don't have any - you NEED to! Creating and writing down goals will make you 10 times more likely to meet 'said' goal than by not making one. What is something you NEED to work on with your teaching? Maybe your goal for the new year could be to be planned and copied for the next week by Friday when you leave. Umm, weekends to yourself? That sounds amazing! Or maybe your goal could be to grade 1 set of papers each day before you leave school. Maybe you want your goal to include your students? Whatever it is, write it down. Post it for you to see, others to see, your class to see! Want your class to do the same? This is a great time to get their goals going and focused too! Check out this amazing Beyond the Data Binder packet to help get you started!
4. Try Something New!
It was Albert Einstein who once said, "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results." Make this year DIFFERENT! Try something new in your classroom! Spice up those old lesson plans and get something fresh in there! Haven't done interactive notebooks yet? Now's your chance to try them! Haven't dove into close reading with your kids? Do it now! What are some of the new and hot teaching trends that you see and read about that you always think, 'some day I will..'? Well TODAY is that someday! Get on Pinterest, get on TPT, and try out something new. You won't regret it!
5. Have Fun!
Finally, for this new year to be the best it possibly could be, you HAVE to have FUN! Get ready, close your door, and teach! Jump, dance, sing, make crafts, do reader's theatre, whatever it takes! Ignore the Negative Nancy down the hallway who constantly complains about all of the meetings and little things you have to do. Yeah, they aren't going away - so get over those! Stay focused on what really matters - the KIDS! Smile every day that you get to be there with them. Hug them, they'll hug you back! Be thankful for the job you have. Start each day with a positive note or thought either for yourself or for the kids. If you can do this, I know you'll have an amazing year teaching!
I hope you ALL have the most amazing new year! :)