Every year it feels like right as summer begins, we’re already getting ready to go back to school. Going back to school is exciting for lots of reasons! We get to see friends regularly, meet our new teachers, and prepare to learn brand new things for the new school year!
But for however exciting going back to school might be, it’s also difficult to get back into the rhythm of a new schedule. This can be especially true for teachers.
For teachers, preparing to go back to school also means preparing to be the most excited, encouraging and motivational people in the classroom.
We asked our friend and kindergarten teacher, Vera, (@thetututeacher) to talk to all of you about how to stay motivated for the upcoming school year, what tools teachers can use to work through the tough times, and how parents can help keep that momentum going at home for the students! See what she has to say below!
Going Back To School with Vera!
As most teachers know, we are never “off”. We may not have to come into the school building until a few days before school starts, but we never stop being a teacher. We are constantly thinking about a professional development session to attend, a great book to read, or materials we might need for our classrooms.
Constantly being “on” helps me stay motivated. I’m always thinking about the next strategy to try or how I may perfect something I’ve done for years. I do spend a considerable amount of time trying to find new books to integrate into our library to ensure we have an inclusive selection.
Teaching can be tough. We are pulled in a thousand directions all day long. We are thinking about the emotional, physical, mental, and educational needs of all of our students while trying to make sure we are meeting state and school standards. Sometimes, we can lose sight of what’s important: the students.
To stay motivated, I encourage teachers to find ways to connect with other educators who can be a support system. Educators who can push us to try new strategies or ideas, who will advocate for opportunities to put ourselves first, and educators who understand the work of being a teacher.
Getting Through A Hard Year
Every teacher has that one year when things just don’t go as planned. I’d remind them that it’s okay to have an off year. It’s okay to need to take a break. It’s okay to ask for help or say you don’t understand something. Sometimes we put so much on ourselves we don’t allow ourselves to be vulnerable. You can’t pour from an empty cup.
What Can Parents Do?
I think the best way for parents to motivate their children at home is to continue to encourage a love of learning. From an early age, children should be excited to learn and experience new things. When school work can become difficult or arduous, parents can reach out to educators to find the best strategies to help encourage their child to stay motivated.
I encourage parents to establish a healthy and positive relationship with their child’s teacher. That includes respecting boundaries and supporting the needs of their individual child as well as the entire classroom.
Vera is the epitome of a Kindergarten teacher. Through tutus, songs, and dance, she ensures each child loves their time in her classroom. Her passion for teaching diversity developed while growing up in El Paso, Texas. Vera has been teaching for fourteen years. Vera currently teaches Kindergarten in Brooklyn, NY.