Like other days in your life, days as a teacher in the classroom will have you feeling excited and anxious all at the same time. Don’t worry too much. Just take a deep breath, look around your decorated classroom, double-check those lesson plans, and remind yourself of all you’ve done to get your day off to a great start. At the Head Start/Early Head Start of Beaver County and the Head Start/Early Head Start of Fayette County, programs of the Private Industry Council of Westmoreland/Fayette, Inc., we strive to ensure all teachers are prepared for the day in order to provide the best learning experience for our children. In order to do so, here are just a few tips that will help you make a positive impression for children within your classroom.
In order to start the day off right, make sure that you arrive to work early. This allows you to have time to prepare for the day without rushing and gives you an opportunity to review your lesson plans for the day. Make sure you have a fun activity prepared so that the children can become engaged as soon as they enter your classroom. Greet students as they enter the bus and the classroom with a smile and a pleasant “Good morning!” Then, invite the children to join you at the carpet as soon as they come in.
In my experience, it has been very helpful to utilize ice breaker activities first thing in the morning. If a child is exhibiting any fears or anxieties, try reading a comical school story first thing in the morning in order to ease these. Next comes the ever so important establishing the rules and routines of your classroom. Be sure to introduce the different areas in the classroom as well as the routines in a positive manner. When developing the classroom rules, make sure to work with the children so they feel a sense of ownership with rules. Devote time every day for the children practice routines and rules. Ensure that a rebus style schedule is posted at child’s eye level and gone over daily. Deal promptly with behavior concerns and when you catch the children doing something good, Praise! Praise! Praise! Utilize positive reinforcement frequently. Finally, take the children on a tour of the classroom and tell them which new areas are accessible and what the rules are for each. It helps to have a little special something in your new areas as well. Make it a production!
In conclusion, these few tips will ease the anxiety and fears that children develop before school. Creating success in the classroom begins with you and a can do positive attitude!