We are returning from a major holiday break. As I said in my Instagram description, “New Teachers: you don’t know what you don’t know.” This statement can never be proven more true then preparing to welcome our students back from a holiday break!
When your students have been gone for a significant length of time, they have to be “reintroduced” to your classroom environment, rules, and procedures. Also note that every student’s home is not pleasant–no matter if they are in a shelter or live in a mansion. The holidays can also be very painful time for some students and adults alike. Whether the holidays were gloomy or absolutely joyous for your students, you need to be prepared. Check out these 4 ways to welcome back your students…and keep your sanity and classroom
#1-TREAT THE FIRST DAY BACK LIKE THE FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL.
I’m not kidding at all. In fact, this is a great time to reintroduce rules and procedures in addition to introducing new ones as well! A nice slideshow presentation is nice as well (I especially have done this upon returning from Christmas Break) especially in grades 6-12. Be loving but firm. They’ve been relaxing and without rules for one or more weeks. Bring them back in with structure.
#2-BRIEFLY OUTLINE WHAT YOU DID BEFORE THE BREAK AND DISCUSS GOALS.
Your students have no idea what you all worked on before the break. To be honest, you may not either. That’s alright, but for their sake and yours, you all need a brief recap with the lesson or content.
Also, discuss goals and having students create their own is a great way to help motivate them and set them in motion before the next break. The goals are up to you. They can be personal, class, grade average, assessment goals, and the list goes on.
#3–BE PREPARED TO WELCOME NEW STUDENTS.
Holiday breaks are popular times for families to move. Almost everyone is off of work or at least sparingly. Additionally, students are home from school as well…to help! Therefore, you may get a few more students after a holiday break. Schedule changes are predominantly done after a break to give some students the feel of a new start. This is why it is so beneficial and almost critical to treat it like a mini first day of school. This helps orientate new students and helps them know what to expect from you.
#4-BE WELCOMING BUT FIRM.
I am not saying roll your eyes, and breathe “humph” then march away! Treat your students with respect and Firmness. This is not the time to be everyone’s best friend. Kids need a teacher’s stability and structure. Friends come within their own age peers. Let them know you mean business. This is not time to play.
You can do this and welcome back!
Stay in the Light–