Back-To-School season always means your to-do list is a mile long and one of the most challenging things about prepping for a new school year is that most of that list can only get done once you have your classroom keys, your new class list, and the other resources you’re waiting on from admin and your district.
If you want to reduce your workload in the upcoming back-to-school season, there are a few things you can this summer to prep what you have control over regardless of what room you’re teaching in or the names of the students in your class.
You can try tackling one of these mini projects each week over the summer or plan to set aside about one week before you head in for your first official work day to complete these projects.
Write Your First Day Plans
Regardless of which grade you are teaching or how many students will be in your class this coming year, your first day of school will look relatively the same because it’s all about the routines. You can write detailed plans for your first day of school and simply plug in the grade-level specific activities you need when you get that information a couple of days before school.
Using the template in this post to create a detailed first-day schedule with notes about all the routines you want to introduce will help you visualize each moment of the first day of school.
As we know, visualization leads to more confidence and success…and we need all the confidence and success we can get when we’ve got 25+ new personalities making a debut in our lives.
If you’re looking for a collection of top-rated back-to-school activities that will help you establish strong classroom routines while helping your students ease into the new school year, check out the Back-To-School Category in my TPT Shop.
Get Your Classroom Library Labeling Done
Getting your library books labeled and in order before the first workday will take a ton off your plate during those busy hours before the first day of school.
When it comes to organizing a classroom library, it is important to have a simple plan for how books will be sorted. I highly recommend dividing fiction from nonfiction to support your students’ ability to distinguish between these two genres. From there, decide whether you want to sort by sub-genre or by reading level.
This decision will depend on your philosophy behind reading instruction, emphasis on leveling within your classroom, and personal preference. Remember, it should be easy for you and your students to find a particular book, and your library should be sorted in a way that makes that process seamless.
This post shares a more detailed classroom library organization process that will help you set up a classroom library that is low-maintenance for you all year because it’s completely managed by your students.
If you’re looking for a set of editable library labels that will make this project a breeze, these library labels are being used in over 5,000 classrooms and are absolutely LOVED by students and teachers.
Begin Brainstorming Classroom Jobs
Classroom jobs are another element you have complete control over whether you know all the details of your teaching position for the coming year or not.
As you brainstorm your classroom jobs, try to think of all the tasks you might need to do before, during, and after school that students can help with after you train them.
Creating classroom jobs that have meaning not only makes your list of tedious tasks shorter, but it also helps students feel they are integral contributors to the daily maintenance of a smooth-running classroom. This translates to greater respect for classroom property, and more buy-in when you teach students how to stay organized, tidy, and efficient.
If you want a set of editable job cards that makes this process quicker and easier than ever, fill out the form below. To read more about using classroom jobs and establishing a strong classroom economy you and your students will love, check out this post.
Free Editable Classroom Job Cards
Which Back-To-School Prep Project Will You Start First?
This back-to-school season you can say goodbye to some of the stress that comes with waiting for resources from your admin and your district.
Tackling fun mini projects like labeling your classroom library, writing your first-day lesson plans, and brainstorming classroom jobs, can help you feel more organized and ready for the first day of school while still making time for that well-deserved rest and relaxation this summer.
Comment below to let me know which project you plan to try first.
Wishing you all the best as you think of the year ahead!