As teachers we go back a week before the kids. We are now three days into that week. On my drive home today I realized that I've been so caught up in preparing my classroom for the year, I have forgotten to plan for the students for next week. This happens to me every year.
I don't mean to suggest that the time spent on my classroom is not worthwhile. It certainly is. Setting up my classroom involves thinking through all sorts of important issues for the year. It makes me think about the community we want to create, the different learning experiences we will have, and the possible personalities in our class. I get so excited about creating a space that will offer many possibilities and be as flexible as possible, that it becomes all consuming.
Tonight, tomorrow, over the next few days, it is time to think about the kids. What will we do on that first day? How will we get to know one another? How will we organize all our materials? What will we do to begin building a strong community?
Even more importantly, it is time to begin really fleshing out my vision for the year (some might fairly say I should have started sooner actually). I still don't have a big picture view of this year and without that I'm just throwing things together here.
I'd love to hear about the way you spend your first days with students. What's your vision for that time and how to work to reach it?