Yesterday was our first official day on campus, although all of us have been working on our rooms and plans for a week or more. I was pleased to hear one of the guys who installed our smart board say, “I didn’t know teachers worked so hard before school starts!” I don’t think most people give it a lot of thought. Most school schedules allocate only a day or two for “room preparation” when in reality it takes about five, especially if furniture has been moved out for floor waxing. But that’s part of a teacher’s life and we accept and even enjoy the annual restoring and redecorating of our rooms. Mine still needs a little detail tweaking, but for the most part it is ready for students.
This week and the next will be devoted to getting acquainted and establishing classroom management. It is essential to spend as much time as necessary on procedures and scheduling in order to ensure that we can accomplish everything we need to this year. Children need to know where to find everything they need and what to do if their pencil breaks and when we go to recess. They need to know when they can talk and when they need to be quiet. So many things to learn in a short amount of time. And you know what? Most of them learn very quickly…they want to behave and learn and be part of a successful class! They like structure and are very proud when they can tell me the next thing we are supposed to do, or tell a classmate where to find something.
We begin with a small class, only thirteen students, but I know by Monday our numbers will increase. August is about change and transition for everyone. But this is the first week of an exciting adventure! Ready, set, go….