Check out these 5 tips to help make this year your best yet!
Throw away all the things! Yes, you heard correctly! Throw away things you haven’t used. This is going to lighten your emotional load and your physical load. In fact, throw away things you do use, such as anchor charts and handouts. Anchor charts should be fresh and created with your class, so if you’re holding on to old ones, cute ones, etc. take a cue from Elsa and LET IT GO! Also, let go of handouts. Most things you can get online and there’s really no reason to keep physical copies of handouts. If you’re still clinging to some, ask yourself if they are still relevant, fresh, and aligned to your state’s new standards. Getting rid of these things will force you to seek out new resources and this is a GOOD THING! It’s okay to step out of your comfort zone and explore new websites in search of some fresh new lessons and ideas. Dive into Pinterest and Instagram with the mission of replenishing your arsenal. It will change you and change can be very good!
Make a list! Make a list of three things you are really good at. What have you mastered in this game of teaching or life? Write it down. Admire it. Revel in it and then share it. Let the world know your worth. Raise your hand during that faculty meeting where you’re usually silent. Give advice to a new teacher. Share materials with your team. Let your kids know what you’re great at! Exude confidence! No one is great at everything, but everyone is great at something.
Know your students! Build strong relationships with your kids. Look them in the eyes and really see them for who they are and what they are capable of. Believe in them. If you want to have your best year yet, you wont have it without those kiddos, so get them on board the greatness train.
Try something new. You’ve thrown out the things. You’ve explored new ideas. You’ve tooted your own horn. You’ve built strong relationships. Now, try something you never thought you would. It could be as simple as teaching Math in the morning (which the old you would never do), or a classroom transformation, a field trip, flexible seating. The point is, try something and know that if it doesn’t work it’s okay to abandon ship and try something different or go back to the drawing board. If you never try, you’ll never know.
Do something for you. Infuse something into your classroom that is just for you. A sound machine, aromatherapy, music, soft lighting, plants, a small fridge, coffee maker, snack jar… you get the idea. It doesn’t mean the kids can’t and won’t benefit from these additions, but they will be there because you want them there and they are meant to make you happier in your space. It’s important to nurture yourself. We spend a lot of time in our classrooms so let’s make it our happy place.
The above sort of happened organically for me last year and it was a very good year! I’ve been very reflective about what worked last year and that led me to these 5 tips. This year, I’m fortunate to be moving up with my class and building on what is a very strong foundation. I plan to be more intentional about implementing these five tips and working toward my best year yet! Let me know your tips and join me on this journey!