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Prepare Now for Back to School


Found in: Classroom Setup, Recordkeeping, Bulletin Boards, End of Year

Although my colleagues think I am over-achieving, I put up my hallway bulletin board before I leave in June. When I return, all I need to do is add the students' names. I also make a bulletin board in my classroom with suggestions for success created by my current class.

The last few years, I have made sure to leave my closets and drawers organized, not just shove everything away on the last days of school. There is no better feeling than returning to a clean classroom with organized resources and supplies. It's one less thing to add to the stress of the beginning of school.

Another suggestion—go a little "green" and stop using paper on your bulletin boards. I buy inexpensive material, sometimes even remnants are large enough, and cover my boards with those. The material has been up for 9 years and it still looks great because it does not fade or rip like paper. The only board I change is the one in the hallway, but I try to pick a generic background so even that does not have to change more than once or twice a year.

I have a file box with folders containing all of the activities I do in the first two weeks of school. As I use them, I make more copies so they are ready for the next time. This is also helpful since at the end of the year, paper is in short supply!

I have my plans for the first three-and-a-half days of school typed out. Each year, I tweak them a bit depending on the class configuration I have or if I find something new. Additionally I keep a list of all the "nuts and bolts" I do before school starts and in those first few days: from making labels, sending welcome post cards, etc. This is a great reminder and keeps me organized.

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