Back To School Is Here

It’s mid July and the aisles are filling up with back to school items! As an elementary grade educator, this is a love hate relationship. I love that I can purchase supplies at a discount, but hate the fact that summer is coming to an end. By the beginning of August, I become anxious for the first day of school. Going back to school is very exciting, but stressful. As companies, whose clientele is made up of educators, the key to building relationships is to see back to school through their eyes and understand their stresses that exist.

 

Academic Stress

Not only do educators need their rooms ready for the first day of school, they need to have their lessons academically sound. While the first few days may be filled with building relationships, it also needs to be filled with academics. This can be even more challenging when teachers are transferred to a new grade or content area. As a K-8 educator, I am qualified to teach any grade level from kindergarten through eighth grade. That is terrifying, especially because some positions are hard to fill! I still have flashbacks to twenty years ago when I was hired the day before school started. Yikes!

 

Emotional Stress

It takes more than a few days to set up a classroom, elementary teachers typically come in several days before the “official” teacher in-service meetings so they can be ready for their students. Each child needs a name tag on their desk, locker, and any other personal space. By doing so, children feel less stress because they have their space identified. Many school districts have an Open House prior to the first day of school. This is a great way for students to meet their teacher and drop off any school supplies, which saves time on the first day of school and we can get to the business of learning!

 

Financial Stress

Many retailers offer deep discounts to help families and educators offset the cost of going back to school. Even local businesses have begun offering Backpack giveaway programs. This is a way to help alleviate the financial stress of going back to school. As a mother of a large family, I really appreciated this. It can definitely hurt the pocketbook to buy items for your classroom as well as for your own family.

 

Physical Stress

You may have heard the statement, “there’s no tired like teacher tired!” Standing on your feet all day, prepping for the next day, and don't forget about taking care of any other personal responsibilities is physically demanding. Those first few weeks of school as filled with sleepless nights because we worry about being ready for our students, but I wouldn’t change being an elementary educator.

 

We love what we do and make sacrifices for our students every day. As we prepare for the upcoming school year, we need your support because it can be very stressful. The support can come through discounts, words of encouragement, or even time saving ideas to reduce our stress. By finding ways to support us through this back to school phase can help establish trusting relationships with us and will benefit our learners.

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About the Author

Teresa Marchant a Teacher Librarian at Lockwood School in Billings, Montana. She has been an educator for 20 years and has served as the Professional Development Committee Chair in her school district and on the board for the Montana Library Association. Additionally, Teresa has been part of team responsible for writing state and local Library Information Literacy standards. She holds a Masters in Educational Technology with an emphasis in Online Instruction from Montana State University as well as a certificate in School Library Media from the University of Washington. She loves learning and enjoys helping others which makes her an awesome school librarian. 

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