It's an exciting time of year for everyone! There's a buzz of energy as parents are rushing around for gifts, students are taking their last tests, and teachers wrap up grading before heading home to their own families. After a couple of weeks of holiday treats, an abundance of gifts, and plentiful family time, students and teachers alike may be avoiding thoughts of heading back to school. Alas, it will come if you're ready or not – so might as well be ready! Teachers, here are 4 tips for a smooth transition back into school after your holiday break.
1. Finish Well
With the hustle and bustle at the end of the year, it may be difficult to make sure you end on a good note, but it's important that all looming projects and tests have been completed before the break while the information is fresh in the minds of your students. This will put them and you at ease for the break knowing they completed the necessary tasks. If this is accomplished, then you won't have to spend extra time at the start of the year reviewing the same information so projects and tests can be completed. It's a win for everyone!
2. Encourage Christmas Reading
While summer reading programs are popular, holiday break reading isn't as frequently promoted. Encourage your students to continue to learn over the break be reading books they enjoy instead of books assigned within the classroom. Hopefully this will begin teaching them that learning can be fun!
3. Review Classroom Policies
Every child has a different set of rules that are enforced within their homes. Often, students seem to forget to adhere to the rules that you have previously enforced. To avoid this, you might want to consider going over your class rules, policies, and expectations so your students are less likely to claim their behavior was merely a lapse in memory. They need to know that you're consistent and aren't going to forget the rules you have previously made. Consistency is key.
4. Take it Slow
Some teachers like to jump right back into the swing of things the moment classes start back. There certainly isn't a "right" way to get your classroom on track again, but we recommend you ease into the school year. Your students may be tired and discouraged thinking about the months ahead of them, so it may be more effective not to overwhelm them on the first day back in class. Students may be excited to tell you about their holiday adventures so perhaps you can assign a short writing assignment for them to tell you about their break while easing them into the remainder of the school year.
Remember that preparation is key! We hope you have had a great first half of the school year, and that you get plentiful rest and time to recharge before you head into 2020 with your students. We appreciate all you do to educate the young minds of our community and hope you have an excellent 2020 full of engaged students and growth.