Meet the Teacher Ideas {with Mrs. Plemons' Kindergarten}

Wow this summer is FLYING by! Here in Wisconsin, most teachers don't go back to school until September, but that doesn't mean we don't all start stressing thinking about back to school the second we flip our calendar over to August. I'm here to share some tips and ideas for back to school/meet the teacher/open house or whatever you may call it at your school.

Tip #1 - Snacks!

I don't know about you, but we do NOT have air conditioning in our school. Which means cramming 20 ish students and their families into my classroom in late August = one hot mess! Cooling everyone down with some beverages and filling the kiddos up with sugar usually breaks the ice and puts a smile on all of our faces.

Tip #2 - Labeled bins for student supplies
If you are lucky enough to have students bring supplies before the first day of school I recommend having a place for students to drop off any shared items.  My kiddos share most supplies in the classroom so its so much easier just to have them drop them in one place so there aren't piles all over the room. I usually store them in the drawers and cupboards you see below so having them presorted into boxes saves me TONS of time! As an added time saver I will usually ask parents to take glue sticks, pencils, dry erase markers, etc. out of the packaging so I don't have to waste time doing it later.

Tip #3 - Information, handouts and treats at students' seats
Being a kindergarten teacher, I usually have a short presentation at our Welcome Back Night because for many students/parents this is their first time at our school.  As parents enter, they find this packet at their child's spot which gives them instructions for what to do. After everyone leaves I can easily see which families I haven't connected with yet because their packets will be left at their spots. And of course I can't resist sending the kids home with a little treat ;)

Tip #4 - Have a plan!
Okay, so I know some schools/teachers prefer to have a laid back, informal, drop in and say hi kind of welcome back night, which is GREAT! You are building relationships which is SOOO important. I've tried that before, but that's just not my style. Here is usually how that goes for me...kindergarten parents enter my room looking like a deer in the headlights or they start bombarding me with 7,236 questions. The students, and usually a few smaller siblings, find every fun item in the room. They smush play dough in the carpet, color on the walls, take out 34 books and put them back in random baskets, and otherwise give this OCD teacher a heart attack. (okay so maybe its not that bad, but it's kind of my nightmare...)

So here is my plan: answer questions before they're asked, have parents fill out important forms before they forget, get their help with organizing and keep the kids busy and they won't drive you cuh-razy before the school year even officially starts.

If you need help getting ready for your school’s Meet the Teacher, Open House, Back to School or Welcome Back Night, I have a Back to School Night Pack full of resources to keep you organized and prepared to kick your year off successfully.

Here is what is included: 

• Signs for Welcome, sign in, refreshments, supply drop off, and form turn in
• EDITABLE Signs for your additional needs
• Sign in and Transportation Forms
• Welcome Night Agenda (if you plan to give a formal presentation)
• Welcome Night Checklist (if you plan to have an informal drop in night)
• EDITABLE versions of both the agenda and checklist
• Student Information forms
• Parent Volunteer Forms
• 3 Coloring Page Options to keep little ones busy
• 7 Treat Topper Options for Kindergarten-5th Grade
• 12 Parent Guides to the Common Core organized by grade level for ELA and Math
• Meet the Teacher Sample Letter
• EDITABLE Meet the Teacher Letter
• 12 Supply Bin Labels
• EDITABLE Supply Bin Labels
• Sample Parent Presentation Powerpoint
• EDITABLE Parent Presentation Powerpoint

Do you have a welcome back night before school starts? Are you ready, excited or terrified for the start of the year?

Hopefully these tips will help you get off on the right foot and have an amazing start to the school year.

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