As educators, we typically celebrate the start of the ‘new year’ in August and September, right? We excitedly plan, organize, and, if you’re like me, make one-too-many runs to Target as we prepare to launch a fresh, new school year. Yet with the rollercoaster-ride that our schools and classrooms have been on as of late, why not approach January of 2022 with that same eager mindset? It’s time for a new beginning…a clean slate for our students and for ourselves, too!
Here are three simple ideas for successfully kicking off 2022 in your classroom:
Clear out that ‘catch all’ corner
Even the most organized and ‘pinteresting’ among us know what I’m talking about, here. We all have that corner, or bin, or drawer, or cupboard, or all of the above, that collects clutter! Clear out the dried-up markers, the puzzles with missing pieces, and the binders of information that you ‘might need one day’ but haven’t pulled off the shelf since 2010. Pitching those items will create a more calm environment that’s inviting and conducive to learning.
Stick to your boundaries
If there’s anything we’ve learned throughout the very recent past (not mentioning any names 2020 & 2021), it’s that we must be proactive in protecting our own emotional health and our own work/life balance during these crazy times. If you started this school year with some reasonable school-related boundaries, know that slipping into old habits is not unusual. So, take a little time to reevaluate & recommit to those healthy limits that you created at the beginning of the school year as you kick off 2022.
Love the ones you’re with
Yes, your adorable boys & girls might forget their homework, talk too loudly, and sometimes make you question whether or not you’re talking to them or to the walls. All of that being said, they’re yours. Yours to teach, yours to pour into, and yours to help navigate their way through the chaos and confusion that comes with being a person. So, no matter what may or may not have happened in your classroom until now, pledge to love your students so much in 2022 that even your most challenging student can confidently, without question tell people “My teacher loves me.”
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