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Back To School Tips - from Erducators!

Updated: Sep 1, 2021

On a previous post, we asked you to share your best back to school tips, to help us kick off the new school year... and the feedback we received was ERMAZING!! You all left extremely valuable tips and we want to highlight them and share some of them with you all!

A few things are certain — relationships are critical to success and teachers need rest! Educators also agree on the importance of flexibility and patience, especially after such a turbulent year. Also made clear by the comments is that educators have varying perspectives on procedures and organization. Some insist on planning, planning, and more planning; while some educators encourage others to go with the flow and focus more on relationship building during the first week of school.

Whether you are a type A teacher or a type B teacher, we know you’ll appreciate many of these awesome tips from fellow educators. We took our favorite tips and organized them into the following categories:

  • Build Relationships

  • Set Expectations and Procedures

  • Stay Healthy

  • Get Organized

  • Have Patience and Flexibility

  • Things That Just Make Sense


Build Relationships

Teach your heart out, but remember now is the time to build the relationships so that teaching is accepted. Learning, growing, and having fun together will come from that. -ring6635

High School teacher here: Be authentic. -Angela Newby

I have a family meeting with my kiddos every morning! They tell me something about them or they answer a question I present as a way to get to know them. -lthearkinder04

I don’t believe in the never smile until after Christmas philosophy. I say laugh and have fun with the kids on the first day of school! -Jeremiah Moore

Get to know your students, the syllabus can wait a few days. -curlyfry65

Set Expectations and Procedures

I start every year with reading books to my students about kindness and mindfulness to set the tone for my classroom expectations. I also discovered International Delights Caramel Macchiato iced coffee and it’s life changing for the warmer school days. -kathryn.fischer

Let students know what your expectations are early and consistently stick to them. Also, post a daily agenda. I post mine on Google Classroom and put it on the Smartboard so the students know what to expect in class that day. It is also good for students who are absent to see what they missed. -alliepal29

Teach routines and procedures, practice them and then do it again and again the first few weeks. It saves time in the long run. -Sadie Ledyard

Don’t set classroom rules. Have students create them with you and sign it, that way they can be held accountable for what they agreed to as a class and not just what you said. -itsashleyjoy

Stay Healthy

Don’t forget to go home. The classroom will still be there tomorrow. You can add to it throughout the first few weeks. -cabincastle

Drink lots of water and wear comfy shoes, especially the first week. We forget how much talking and standing we do! -holli.baz

My teacher tip is to take your school email off all your personal devices! It will save your mental health. ❤️ -the.savageteacher

You can’t pour from an empty cup… you cannot give yourself if you are empty. ❤️ Be kind to yourself and keep self-care #1. It isn’t a selfish act. -egacula

Get Organized

Organize your Google drive. You’ve probably got a lot of good stuff you forgot about floating around out there. Create folders and use them! -terrimorrisonoil

Sticky notes of all sizes make it easy to make your way around all of the changes that happen the first few weeks. Seating charts, table arrangements, etc. It’s quick and easy to make changes. -Terry Ivey Guynn

Have the first 2 weeks (or more) prepped and ready to go!! The beginning of the school year is way too exhausting to have to lesson plan too! -Sara Griffin

Have Patience and Flexibility

Remember the last two years have been hard, so the beginning of the year may seem difficult. Remember to give grace to everyone, including yourself! -caclements67

Have a plan but know that the first day if not the first week will always be a matter of being flexible as new information comes your way. -Angela Zlatic

Things That Just Make Sense

Attach a mini sharpie to your lanyard for the first week of school! Cuts down time searching for one every time you have to label something! -Alisha Meadows

My self-care tip, get a massage after the first week of school. And don’t forget some cough drops for all that first week of school talking. -hellospanishteaches

Parents - sharpen those pencils before you send them to school with your first graders!!! Your child’s teacher will greatly appreciate it!!! -mjohnsen

Always have snacks. -jackieherb

Use to buy books for your room! Basically on online used book store! Great way to recycle and support small businesses! -kshankss

Cover bulletin boards with fabric and just change the content. The fabric doesn’t rip and looks great all year. -Linda Azanow

Learn your students' names!!! That is the first step to building relationships and letting them know you care! -Richelle Pettit

The week before going back to work, prepare A BUNCH of meals to store in the freezer for later. Evenings that first month back are way too tiring to have to think of dinner ideas too. -Nancy Marie Essary

Those tips are golden!

Isn’t it great to be a part of a community that is so willing to share knowledge and support each other's success?? Thank you all for leaving your comments and helping to form this collective knowledge base! Your participation and commitment to students is what makes this community so special.

As we start preparing for the upcoming school year — or maybe you’ve been preparing for weeks! — let’s all keep in mind some very important points that were repeatedly mentioned in the comments: your mental health is a priority, authentic relationships foster learning, and don’t forget to bring snacks! :)

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