5 Steps to Get Your Classroom Back on Track After Break

5 Steps to Get Your Classroom Back on Track After Break

The holiday season is now officially over. Teachers have thrown off their blankets, put away whatever chocolates and goodies are left, and are gearing up for the second half of the school year. It’s a daunting task, to say the least, and with state testing, just around the corner, it won’t be getting any easier. So what can we as educators do to get this half of the year off on the right foot? Here’s just a few helpful hints and tips to keep momentum going until summer vacation.

1. Time Travel back to the beginning of the year: Re-establish your goals, expectations, and the classroom rules

Two weeks off may not seem like a lot of time, and it certainly didn’t feel like a lot of time for us teachers, but for students, it is an eternity. Many of them will come back to school “forgetting” all the rules and procedures you spent the last few months establishing. Many will look at you with shock and surprise when you actually attempt to enforce them. So why not treat that first day or two like it’s a brand new school year? Reintroduce yourself, re-establish your goals and expectations, and specifically remind your students what the rules of your classroom are.

2. Bring the hammer down

It’s the same concept we need to remind ourselves of after we take any kind of time off. Kids come back to school a little loose in the wheels and need a quick snap back to reality to set the tone going forward. Especially in January, after 2 weeks of playing with their toys and staying up late, students more than ever will need to be reminded that you are, in fact, in charge. January is a golden opportunity to regain control of a classroom that may have started getting a little wonky in those final weeks before break.

3. Get organized!

We all start the year off with sparkling classrooms where there’s a place for everything and everything in its place. We spend weeks over the summer glued to Pinterest looking for the most visually appealing, creative ways to turn our classrooms into the envy of the entire school. Then school starts and books don’t always make it back to the shelf, piles of papers start to add up, and your room inevitably falls into disarray. The break is a great time to organize your classroom and introduce a little feng shui into your life. You’ll be amazed at the difference it makes in everybody’s stress levels.

4. It’s benchmark season – Have the kids take a review quiz

One way to get children back on track is to hit them with a review quiz in that first week back to school. It’s not that you’re mean or cruel, but reminding children of all of the material they’ve covered in the first half of the year can get their brains working again. It also gets them working and focusing on school work right out of the gate. Students are always surprised when they see all of the skills and lessons they were exposed to in just a few months. Plus it reminds them what is expected of them going forward.

5. Kick the New Year off with a fun project

No one is super excited to return to school in January. Sure teachers enjoyed their 2 weeks of sleeping in and binge-watching, but so did the students. Everyone’s fighting a little bit of post-vacation depression, so now is the perfect time to get you and your class excited again with a fun project. Maybe it’s a science experiment, or maybe it’s making bulletin boards, but anything that gets the students engaged and entertained can get your classroom moving in the right direction.

Classroom Management Tips to Help Teachers Kick Off the New Year feature image

Like it? Share with your friends!

Choose A Format
Share your amazing stories, tips, opinions, and other stuff that matters.
Upload your funny, inspiring, DIY, or informative video(s) for the world to see!
Personality quiz
Leave the serious quizzes at school, these are strictly fun! You make the questions and pre-define the results.
Trivia quiz
Time to test your friends' knowledge! You choose the subject and have fun seeing who scores the highest!
Pose any question to millions of educators by creating your own polls/surveys, whether for research, for fun, or for the sake of curiosity!
Share your classroom decor, costumes, funny classroom antics, silly grading moments, or other teacher life shenanigans!