Back to School Season: Are You Ready for Day 1?

Across the nation, schools are opening their doors for their students. Many bought new book bags and pencils. Some woke up extra early for the healthiest breakfast they’ve had all year.

And I bet at least one student brushed his teeth twice.

If you’re a veteran teacher, you’re probably more worried about having enough time to cover all the material. If you’re new to the front of the room, you may be worried about having enough.

In a previous post, I collaged a few errands to run over the break to make sure your teaching skills wouldn’t rust while you were away.

But now all of that is behind you. You either prepared or you didn’t. You worked on your slideshows and group activities.

Or you didn’t.

Regardless of your summer, you’ll have students at their desks in just a few moments.

When you only have 30 seconds before the bell rings, what are the 3 last things you can do to prepare for day 1?

1. Stand up straight.

In her TEDGlobal 2012 talk, Amy Cuddy broke down the effects of body language on how we feel about ourselves.

Her tip for you? Stand up and take up space.

2. Smile.

In February of this year, The Huffington Post posted a list of eleven reasons smiling every day is important. From the list, a few stand out for first day encounters with your students.

  • Stress-reducing. Who doesn’t need that on the first day of school?
  • Increases approachability. A must for teachers, I think.
  • Contagious. If you smile, chances are your students will too.

3. Take a deep breath.

There’s a lot out there about the importance of breathing. Better breathing makes pretty much everything better. And like smiling, breathing reduces stress

Let your students filter in through the door. Let them find their desks, say hi to their friends, and read the chalkboard with your name.

And keep smiling—on day 1, you’ve already got this year in the bag.

One more way to prepare: check out our 5-Minute New Semester Checklist to set up GoReact! You can also subscribe to our education newsletter, The Yardstick & Apple, for more awesome content like this.

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