Avoiding teacher stress comes from making little changes in your daily routine.
Smart teachers know that you can only do your best teaching after you learn to take care of yourself! You’d be surprised how the little things make a huge difference in avoiding teacher stress snd improving the quality of your life and work.
For me, my physical and emotional health are the most important aspects of my life when it comes to maintaining my sanity and energy during the first few weeks of school. By keeping those in check, I am much better able to handle the challenges I may face during the adjustment back to school.
For this particular post, I asked a teacher friend of mine, Elizabeth Cardwell about what she does for avoiding teacher stress at the beginning of the school year. If you are a music teacher, be sure to check her music resources.
1. Prepare your meals ahead of time.
The first thing I do to reduce or avoid teacher stress is begin a meal planning system – this helps to make meals and meal preparation as simple as possible. I have a meal planning system I use at home that makes organizing breakfast and lunch super easy. Do check it out! I stock my freezer and pantry with prepared dishes that I can easily cook or reheat for supper. Most days I can plop down on the couch for a few minutes when I get home before throwing a pre-made casserole in the oven or a can a soup in a pot.
My Freeze Easy site also has really good ideas for meals you can freeze ahead of time. This year I am doing this the week right before school starts so I don’t have to worry about it when I am most stressed and tired.
Related reading: How to Eat Well and Save Money on a Teacher Salary
2. Get enough sleep.
Sleep is necessary to be a functioning human and more so if you are a teacher. I knew this when I started my career but I became an even more passionate advocate after going through pregnancy and the newborn stage with my twins. Experiencing that level of sleep deprivation, and seeing how important sleep was for my babies, made me realize how much of a difference sleep makes for physical, emotional and mental well-being!
By cutting down on the time I spend on activities such as meal preparation and lesson planning makes it easier not only to find the time to sleep but better relax my brain for sleeping. Without worrying about what we are going to eat or what I am going to teach, I can fall asleep much easier. I also make a conscious effort to get off my smartphone and cut off all outside communication by 8:00pm. The amount of sleep I get directly impacts how stressed I am and how well I handle challenges at school and at home!
3. Do planning & get organized!
The time between October and April is not the time to organize your teaching space or teaching materials – this is the time you want to have procedures and plans already in place. August and September are the prime months to begin organizing your teaching.
Long-range lesson planning is one of my greatest passions as a teacher and it is especially helpful during the busier times of the year. During the summer, I map out which concepts I am going to teach for the entire year and then organize my lesson plan accordingly. Some of my favorite lessons to include at the beginning of the year (especially for older children) are review and practice activities for rhythm and pitch letter names. This gives everyone a chance to review some of the foundational concepts from the previous year and gives them a solid foundation for the new material ahead.
What is the secret to avoiding teacher stress? Be wise about your planning both at work and at home! Use your experience to build not only knowledge but also tricks to avoid teacher stress and stay happy in the progession.
Need more tips to organize your time and avoid teacher stress? See other helpful articles below:
- How I Spent Zero Hour on Back to School Prep
- How 30 Minutes During the Summer Saves Me Hour During the Year
- Three Smart Tricks to Stay Organized as a Teacher
- 3 Ways to Reduce Teacher Stress at the Beginning the School Year
What do you do to avoid teacher stress?
If you have written a post or have a good trick
you want to share, please link it up in the comments!