Every year, it’s a great idea to remind students of the basics. But this year, it’s essential. Students have missed a lot of school time over the last couple of years. And like with anything, what you don’t practice, you lose. Students haven’t been practicing some of the very basic things about school. So this year, as you welcome kids back into your classrooms, don’t miss the opportunity to go back to basics.

Here are a few things that may seem way too simple, but that you may want to practice.

How to move at school

How do students walk down the hallway?

How do they line up?

How do they move in the classroom?

How do they transition from one task to the next?

How do they move outside?

How to talk

What volume level is appropriate in the classroom?

What words are appropriate and what are not?

 What signal will be used when students want to talk or share?

How do students alert you when they need help or to go to the restroom?

How will students be called on?

Where students will work

What is each student’s personal space?

What is considered shared space?

What is considered teacher’s space?

What is each section of the classroom used for?

How do students use the materials in the classroom?

Where do students go for whole group time?

Where do students go for small group time?

Where can students go if they need quiet time or to be alone?

What will happen throughout the day

What is the first thing students do when they arrive in the morning?

Where is the daily schedule posted?

What time is lunch?

Can students see a clock or a timer so they know how much time is left on a certain activity?

What specials happen each day? Where is that posted?

How students will interact with each other

How will students address each other?

How will partners and small groups be chosen?

What are appropriate and not appropriate ways to communicate with a peer?

 What should you do if there is a conflict with a peer?

The school outside the classroom

How do students get to the front office?

Where is the nurse’s office?

Where is the counselor’s office?

What is the procedure for using the restroom (if outside the classroom)?

Will students travel alone or with a peer if they need to leave the classroom, such as to visit the nurse?

What areas of the playground are students permitted to access?

What is the procedure for the end of recess?

Where are the specials classrooms (ex-music, art, physical education, etc.)


There are plenty more questions, but these are enough to get you started! It may seem ridiculous to have to spell out some of these very basic concepts, but it certainly can’t hurt. The more students are prepared, the smoother the start of the school year will be.

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