Ah, the sweet sound of passing bells echoing through the empty hallways can only mean one thing – it’s time for teachers to saddle up and ride the wild roller coaster that is the new school year! The forever short summer break provided educators with the perfect opportunity to stock up on patience pills and recharge their creative batteries because, after a hectic year, they really needed it. So, fasten your seatbelts and join me on this journey as we explore the sometimes outrageous and always entertaining world of teachers getting ready for ‘Back to School’!
1. The “I Forgot I Had a Job” Phase:
As the final days of summer melt away, there’s always one teacher who wakes up in a cold sweat, suddenly remembering they have a job. Their panic and utmost anxiety are palpable as they frantically search for their misplaced lesson plans, the class schedule, and of course, their sanity. The thought of getting back into their classroom to get it ready for students is quickly becoming overwhelming and can feel daunting. Those last few beach days might feel more important than arranging desks and putting up bulletin boards, but it all has to get done before the first day so that students enter into a picture-perfect classroom where they will spend the next nine months learning and growing. Welcome back to reality, my dear – the blissful days of Netflix marathons and endless ice cream runs are but a distant memory now, until next summer of course. If you are having trouble remembering when school starts, or need a new way to organize your busy teacher-life, here are some of our favorite time management products:
- Blue Sky™ Joselyn Weekly/Monthly Planner, 8 in x 5 in, 2024
- House of Doolittle Executive Monthly Desk Pad Calendar, 19 in x 24 in, 2024
- MasterVision 3-in-1 Calendar Planner Dry Erase Board, 36 in x 24 in, Silver Frame
Being a teacher or an educator of any kind can be a demanding yet rewarding job. Having the summers off is definitely a perk, which makes up for all those long hours teachers put in during the school year. But when it’s time to get ready for a new year, educators jump right back into the swing of things like they never left their education oasis. That’s the magic of teachers. They pick up right where they left off and are ready to teach a new classroom full of students as soon as they walk through the door.
2. Decorating Fever:
Once teachers have successfully located their keys, it’s time for the exhilarating adventure of sprucing up their classrooms. Armed with glue guns, bulletin board paper, and what some would consider an unhealthy obsession with laminating everything, teachers scatter like tornadoes, transforming their once-bare walls into Pinterest-worthy havens. Warning: entering a teacher’s classroom during this phase may cause flash blindness due to an overwhelming display of bright colors and creativity.
If you’re a teacher who is getting ready to welcome new students this fall, here are a few ways you can ask for help from loved ones and friends:
- Bring extra hands to help get the classroom ready: What’s better than 2 hands… 4! Teachers could always use company when rearranging and planning out new classroom layouts. When that time of year comes around, switching the hangout spot to the classroom and bribing your loved ones to help can make things easier and less overwhelming. Getting help with decorating bulletin boards, arranging the classroom library, and even wiping down the surfaces can shave precious hours off the time to get your room student ready. Plus, if their handwriting is good, you might be able to get them to create nametags for the students. Yay!
- Bring supplies: As many people already know, a lot of teachers spend their own money on classroom supplies and materials that they will need throughout the year. Some school districts might not have a large budget, and teachers will use their own earnings to supplement. If you feel up to it, making a wish list of supplies can allow your loved ones to contribute to your classroom financially as opposed to physically. Here are a few of our favorite items to add to a wish list:
3. Staff Meetings: The Hunger Games Edition:
Surviving staff meetings should be considered an extreme sport. The battle for the last drop of coffee in the faculty room, strategically planning your escape routes, or trying to keep up with the new acronyms for educational initiatives – these are the life and death situations teachers face. May the odds be ever in your favor, but spoiler alert: they usually aren’t.
After a long day with your students, staff meetings usually aren’t the most desirable place to be, but they are important. These meetings are where administrators communicate issues, problems, or goals they have, which can sometimes result in meaningful discussions. Trust me, they don’t sound fun, but they are vital to keeping everyone on the same page.
4. The Student-Teacher Reunion:
Once the first day of school arrives, teachers eagerly await their sparkling students to grace them with their presence. For some, it’s a warm reunion filled with hugs and laughter; for others, it’s reminiscent of surviving a zombie apocalypse. The students who still remember how to raise their hands instead of randomly shouting, “Me, me, me!” are highly revered and celebrated. Those who don’t remember the school rules? Well, let’s just say their teacher has already mentally planned a week of worth moral lessons.
If you have stumbled upon this blog post and aren’t a part of the teacher/educator community, first of all, thank you for reading this far. Second, if you are a parent of a school-aged child, it might be a good idea to remind your little smarty-pants of some of the classic classroom manners before school begins. Things like raising their hand, using their inside voice, and being polite are some examples of things to quiz your little brainiac on. Your child’s teacher will thank you later.
5. The Teachers’ Lounge: The Unofficial Comedy Club:
If you’ve ever entered the sacred ground known as the teachers’ lounge during lunchtime, you already know it’s the hottest comedy club in town. Here, teachers laugh away their stress, share funny anecdotes, and attempt to one-up their colleagues with amusing classroom mishaps. There’s nothing like the healing power of laughter to remind us to embrace the joy in teaching, even when the struggle is real.
The only escape from students is the teacher’s lounge. That room seems to always have the best snacks, delicious coffee, and candy. I would know, being the daughter of a teacher who would sneak in to see what the hype was all about. All things that students cannot have due to allergies, rules, or the fear of sugar high are all in there. Shhh. Don’t share this info with your kiddos, they might become curious and make their way in there at school. If you are an educator, don’t forget about that little safe haven because it might be the only room where you can get a little break while your students are away at lunch, gym, or with another adult.
Now that you’ve had a taste of the thrilling ride teachers embark on when heading back to school, you can appreciate the sheer resilience, creativity, and humor teachers possess. So, as we steel ourselves for another year of shaping young minds, let’s remember to laugh through the chaos and cherish every absurd moment that comes our way. Buckle up, my friends, because we’re in for the wildest ride yet! Happy Back to School!
Elementary Assets. 35+ New Teacher Must Haves That Won’t Break the Bank. (https://elementaryassessments.com/new-teacher-must-haves/) Accessed August 2, 2023.
ThoughtCo. 7 Back to School Tips for Teachers. (https://www.thoughtco.com/back-to-school-for-teachers) Accessed August 2, 2023.