6 Back to School Tips for Teachers After COVID-19

The countdown to the new academic year is fast approaching, as teachers start to feel the summer holiday rapidly disappearing. The end is finally in sight and what originally appeared to be a never-ending break is the inevitable return to work. For many teachers, this may be the first time entering their classroom since March due to the Coronavirus pandemic. This should be a time for reflecting on achievement and embracing the new challenges ahead, but some education staff may be feeling anxious about returning to school. Educators will be wanting to reunite with their colleagues and pupils but will also want the return to be safe, planned and properly supported.

Education Support recently completed a survey with 820 school teachers and leaders, their findings showed that 44% are worried about what will happen this term. Education staff are busy creating resources, planning lessons, and revamping classrooms but the level of uncertainty is overwhelming. There is a lot of pressure on teachers, we have witnessed the central role they play in our society and they will be playing a huge part to help support children through the transition back to normal school life. Whilst the ‘back to school’ rhetoric focuses on pupils, it’s the teachers who are under pressure - we must facilitate a smooth transition. The remaining weeks should be used as an opportunity to recharge and what better way to get started than to follow our top tips for teachers?

1) Buy a new pencil case

New school year, new you! Why not treat yourself so you’re feeling fresh and ready for the classroom. Your job is important, and your tools should reflect that! Sometimes it’s the small things that make you feel equipped and calm. School gates are soon to open, so make your grand entrance with something shiny and wonderful.

2) Meet up with a colleague 

Have a chat with another colleague to find out how they are preparing themselves for the return to work and talk through any worries you may have. Share resources and lesson plans to save time, dedicating more time with families and friends. 

3) Listen to a podcast 

Whether you drive, cycle or walk to work, soak in some entertainment or knowledge. The journey before and after school is valuable and precious. This may be the only time you have to yourself, so use it wisely. Why not try listening to a podcast or indulge in an audiobook? Switch off, shut down and unwind because your body and mind need to take a break, not just over summer, but every day. 

4) Have a couple of early nights

Don’t feel nervous about those early mornings, return to routine by going to sleep earlier in preparation for your first day back. Increase your sleep time from 6 to 8 hours so you are renewed and readjusted. Why not take a warm bath and listen to your favourite soundtrack before getting into bed and drifting off? 

5) Put the slow cooker on

Ease the pressure on the first week back, switch on the slow cooker to save you time. The thought of juggling family and school life may be daunting but there are ways to gain efficiency and free up time. Having a meal prepped and cooked the night before means more family time and you’ll have no excuse for missing meals. Just because you’re back to work doesn’t mean you should punish yourself. Try to take breaks and eat when you can. 

6) Do nothing

Some of us find it extremely difficult (or impossible!) to simply do nothing, something that especially applies to teachers. As summer ends there is an increased need to cram in as many activities as possible and to make the most of the last days of freedom. It’s easy to get lost in tasks that will make us feel like we’ve achieved something. Switch off your phone, leave the housework and put your feet up. It’s easy to forget that sometimes the most wonderful feeling is the feeling of doing nothing at all. 

Try not to countdown your last few days, take a deep breath, and remember to make yourself a priority. Avoid your back to school dread and start the year right. 

Why not start now with getting more sleep, find out ways to improve your sleep quality for returning to school. You can find tips here: How Anxiety Affects Your Sleep and How to Change It

Get in touch with us on social media and share your advice with other teachers. We want to know what you’re doing to get classroom ready! 

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