The beginning of a new school year can be an exciting time in the life of a teacher. Your posters are up, your desks are arranged, and you’ve finally gotten your class roster. It can also be a bit of an overwhelming time, too. Lots to do, lots to print, and lots to prepare. Here are three tips to help you to get your school year started on the path of success.
Start Simple: There is the temptation to prove how fun and exciting your class will be by giving an interesting (and usually complex) class project straight out of the gate. In reality, your students are probably only partly aware that their summer is over by the time the first day of school hits and even more of them will still be gathering books and supplies well into the first week of school. To get everyone started on the right foot, begin with more simple instruction. Give your students a chance to get back into the “school flow” before diving into a complicated class project.
Have a Logistics Plan: One of the biggest things that teachers neglect to plan for when the year begins is classroom logistics. They hand out their first worksheet or give their first homework assignment only to be met the next day with, “So where do we turn this in?” As a result, valuable instruction time can be lost. Some teachers find having an assignment tray for each class to drop their work into every day to be helpful. Others have the students keep their work in a journal that is collected at the end of each week. Find what works for you before the year begins for a smooth start.
Use a Curriculum Guide: Whether you’re a first year teacher coming up with lessons from scratch or a veteran teacher looking to shake things up and improve on the year before, let’s face it: planning and organizing curriculum is daunting. Fortunately, you don’t have to do it alone. Sites like http://socialstudiesmegastore.com/ have several curriculum guides and activities created by expert teachers for the classroom. No need to reinvent the wheel, just find your topic and download the provided content and activities and you are good to go!
There is nothing quite like the fresh start that comes with a new school year. Enjoy this time and check back regularly for more teaching tips from Social Studies MegaStore!