After you have taken some well-deserved time to relax this summer, we know you will be eager to jump into planning for next year. This month’s post is full of excellent “Back to School” planning resources for you and for your teachers!
Choose a School-Wide Theme
Start the new year on a positive and uplifting note by creating a theme for your school this year. Use this printable guide to help you decide what theme would best fit the needs of your school community this year. You could even consider recruiting your older students to help choose the theme!
We know it’s only July and schools don’t open for another month or so, but back to school season is already gearing up. Most major retailers are already pushing school supplies and uniforms. And while most teachers are dreaming up new themes and décor, we want you to prepare to put organizational systems in place that will last you all year long. Well thought out classroom organization can go a long way to reducing chaos and stress while keeping everyone working effectively and efficiently.
Here are some of our favorite classroom hacks to stay organized all year:
Student Display Space
For this hack from BoredTeachers.com, use laminated colored paper and a clothespin to create a special space to display student work all year. Students will love having an honored place to show off their hard work.
Color Code Classroom Technology
Color code your technology with this hackfrom Prodigy. Use colored tabs to help students find the right spot for the device and the matching cable!
Say Goodbye to Glue Sticks
Make glue sponges. All you need is glue, a sponge, and a small Tupperware container. This hack found on WeAreTeachers.com will save you so many glue sticks!
Dry Erase Dots
Use dry erase dots on your group table. Save yourself the trouble of getting out the dry erase boards and storing them all year. Create a dry erase board right on the table with this hack from BoredTeachers.com.
Create an “AWOL” binder (Absent Work Organizational Log) with this hackfrom WeAreTeachers. Use this binder to keep track of what was done in class each day as well as any assignments that are due. Be sure to insert any handouts or other assignments.
We know many of you rose to the challenge this year and overcame great odds to provide your students with the support they needed to learn and thrive. Now that the school year is coming to a close, it’s time for you to take a quiet moment to yourself to reflect on an unprecedented year. We hope the resources below can help you not only wrap up the year, but also reflect on your successes and your opportunities for growth. Congratulations, you made it!
The Year in Review: Grab some coffee and your favorite pen. Print this document and take some time to process this year and plan for next year!
End of Year Checklist: Download and edit this document to provide to teachers as they close out the year.
Classroom Inventory: Allow teachers to use this document to ensure the inventory in each classroom is accounted for.
Congratulations! You made it through an unprecedented year. This month’s resources are here to help you reflect and refresh. Take a moment to celebrate your success and reflect on all the challenges that you overcame. Explore all the free professional development options for summer learning and growth below!
We know your teachers and staff have been nothing short of amazing this year. This month’s post aims to give you some new ways to honor their hard work. We also know you are busy making plans for summer learning, so we’ve highlighted a few programs below. Don’t forget to register for the Choice in Education Celebration and make sure that you and your staff sign up for our teacher appreciation giveaway!
Ideas for Teacher Appreciation
Decorate the sidewalk entrance telling the teachers how much they are appreciated.
Have you heard about the Choice in Education Celebration? This celebration is in lieu of our annual Choice in Education Conference. We are throwing a virtual party to close out the school year and show appreciation for our private school leaders, educators, parents and students. This FREE event will be held virtually on May 20th from 3:30 p.m.-5:30 p.m. We will hear from Keynote Speaker Gerry Brooks, and giveaway fabulous prizes!
In honor of all your hard work, patience, and flexibility this year and every year, we are dedicating this post to celebrating YOU! Thank you for your patience, empathy, positivity, enthusiasm, knowledge, flexibility, leadership, kindness, perseverance, humility, and resilience. Check out all of the freebies and giveaways below!
Thank you teachers!
We are so proud of the work you do every day to make a difference in your students’ lives. This month, the Student Learning and Partner Success team is giving away a $25 Amazon gift card.
Have you heard about the Choice in Education Celebration? This celebration is in lieu of our annual Choice in Education Conference. We are throwing a virtual party to close out the school year and show appreciation for our private school leaders, educators, parents and students. This FREE event will be held virtually on May 20th from 3:30 p.m.-5:30 p.m. We will hear from Keynote Speaker Gerry Brooks, and giveaway fabulous prizes! Save your seat and REGISTER TODAY!
Spring testing season is upon us! We know you are gearing up for your end of year assessments this month. We hope the resources below will make your preparations easier and inspire you to try something new.
Two weeks before testing, ask parents to send a note encouraging their child to do their best on the end of the year assessment. Provide parents and/or family members with the materials to write the letters. Think about sending home fancy paper, envelopes, and make some suggestions of things to say. Give the parents the option to text or record their message, create posters, email their messages or mail in their letters to allow flexibility and creativity. Before you administer the test, give students the message to read or view before they begin.
Attitude is Altitude is a CASEL-aligned social emotional learning curriculum designed for grades K-12. Nick Vujicic, a world-renowned motivational speaker, launched the initiative to help guide and inspire students with Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) after experiencing a childhood of hardship due to bullying.
In honor of National Autism Awareness Day on April 2nd, this month’s post highlights resources to support the success and acceptance of unique learners in your classroom. We hope you will use these resources throughout the year!
Person First Language
A disability does not define an individual! Identify the individual first rather than the disability. Explore the resources below to learn more about person first language and be sure to adopt this practice in your classroom and your everyday life.
Social stories are a great way to explain simple concepts or experiences with visuals. This is a great tool to use BEFORE a student experiences something. If a teacher knows a fire drill is taking place soon, she can review a fire drill social story to prepare the students.
Visual tools are a great way to promote functional communication. The resources below offer options to use for visual schedules, social stories, behavior charts, etc. Both resources offer functional graphics that are simple to interpret.
Check out the Symbolstix resource from n2y. This service offers quick access to communication tools and a library of over 60,000 symbols visuals to use for $129 per year. There are more free resources for IEP’s to explore from n2y here.
It is important for all students to understand and accept people with autism! Autism Speaks created the Puzzle Piece Project to increase the understanding and acceptance of students with autism in all grade levels.
We know you are busy this month with teacher evaluations, observations, and classroom walkthroughs. This post aims to provide you with some quick and easy to implement resources for your classroom walkthroughs! Also, don’t miss the excellent curriculum and culture webinars coming up this month. Learn more and register via the links below!
In honor of Read Across America Day, this month we’re featuring a March Madness Reading Challenge! And, because every month should include stories of diverse American heroes, the theme of the reading challenge is: Unsung Heroes of Black History. Challenge your students to get to know these 16 influential little-known heroes. Which inspiring story will become your favorite unsung hero?
Looking to inspire your middle and high school students?
Sometimes middle school or high school students struggle to connect authentically with history lessons. One way to inspire them to pick up a biography about a historical figure is to show a documentary tied to that figure’s life and structure class discussion around the documentary. Consider viewing Mighty Times: The Children’s March, a 2004 American short documentary film about the Birmingham, Alabama civil rights marches in the 1960s, highlighting the bravery of young activists involved in the Children’s Crusade and using discussion questions provided by Learning For Justice. You just might inspire your students to pick up a book about movement leaders Rev. Andrew Young and Rev. James Bevel, or Carolyn McKinstry, one of the marchers profiled in the documentary.