What is Your Theme?
I am starting to see tweets, posts, pins that show teachers preparing for the upcoming year. I love that teachers are already passionate about their new class but I am concerned that we (mainly early childhood teachers) are getting rooms prepared for kids we have not even met. How is it possible to make a behavior plan, decorate an entire room or set the year long plan for a group of kids you don’t know? I have been guilty of this in the past but this year I am rethinking things. I know it is probably not possible to start with a blank slate room (although that thought does interest me). What I am asking is when we pour our heart, energy and time into setting up EVERY aspect of a room before we even meet the kids who are we really setting up the room for? Yes, parents and kids notice the walls and the “cute factor” but is that what we want to be the focus? Of course it is important to bring your own flavor and passions into the room but that should be balanced with the actual needs of the children.
So this year my theme is Relationships. Everything I do setting up for the first few weeks of school will focused on how to build relationships with my class and parents. I’m not exactly sure what that will look like but I will be working over the next few weeks towards that goal. I want the children to feel like it is their class from the start and parents to understand we are a team from day one. A few ideas I have are below. They are not anything special but I want to make sure my main focus in on relationships instead of a separate agenda.
- Digital frame with pictures of me growing up and my family
- Photo album in the bookshelf with pictures of my family
- Welcome to my room video for kids to watch prior to first day
- Welcome email to parents outlining my philosophy
- No rules or “behavior plan” (will be posting more about this later)
- Play, play and more play
I know I have a lot to add to this and would love suggestions. I’m not saying my room will be blank and my walls empty, I’m just going to work to spend my time and energy on the things I feel are the most important in the class. Those relationships will lead me in the direction I need to go for discipline, room management, and academics. What is your theme? #relationshipsmatter