As summer is coming to an end and a new school year is approaching teachers and students are preparing themselves mentally and physically for the school year which starts August 17, 2022.
“I am excited for a new beginning. Every year is a fresh start for both the students and teachers,” 6th-grade teacher Rosa Martinez said.
Martinez explained that she takes what she has learned from previous school years and she applies it to every school year so that she can grow not only academically — but socially and professionally as well.
“I am most excited about building relationships with my students and their families,” 5th-grade teacher Vanessa Paredes said.
Paredes explained that she is also excited about creating a strong classroom community where students can grow, feel safe, and be challenged.
“Aside from ensuring that my classroom is ready to go, I prepare by setting up boundaries and taking some time to de-stress,” Martinez stated.
Martinez revealed that she also teaches summer school, and her free time after summer school is very short. During her free time, she said she reads, catches up on appointments, travels, and takes some time for herself. She wants her students to have the best version of herself.
A major part of preparing for the new school year is purchasing supplies and preparing the classrooms.
“When it comes to purchasing supplies for our students, the school provides us with essential supplies for the students to begin the year,” said Paredes. “However, teachers always need supplemental supplies, therefore many teachers purchase supplies with their own money.”
Martinez stated that although she does get some of the supplies covered with payback the amount varies every year and does not always cover the total that they spend.
“I can’t speak for other teachers or other schools; however, I supply many of the school supplies on my own,” Martinez disclosed.
Martinez voiced that it would be nice if they got more coverage from the school districts, but know she knows that she is helping families who may not be able to afford supplies for their children.
Paredes also explained that some teachers have items they absolutely must have, such as pencil boxes, and that they do not mind buying those items themselves. Other teachers do not buy supplies because they can be fine with what the school provides.
Nevertheless, some schools have fundraisers for certain supplies such as books, or other schools have more donations provided to them. Aside from buying school supplies for their students, teachers must also set up their classrooms before the beginning of the school year.
“It is not required but we are almost forced to. We are not given enough contracted time to set up our classroom,” Martinez revealed. “We are given time, but that gets taken over by meetings, so teachers are forced to set up classrooms on our time.”
Martinez explained that she never had to deep clean her classroom because the custodial staff at her school site are heroes and help out tremendously. She also commented that they have a check-out and check-in list but nothing outside the basics.
“Before the school year begins, teachers have access to their classroom and have the option to set up when they please to do so. However, teachers, have a set day that they are reported to come back and that is when many choose to set up their classrooms and prepare,” Paredes said.
Paredes noted that the classrooms are deep cleaned over summer so when teachers are ready to set their rooms up, they can do so in a clean environment. As far as setting up the classrooms, Paredes said there is no list to follow and decoration is at the teacher’s discretion.
Paredes explained that teachers must ensure every student has the necessary materials (subject books, pencils, crayons, erasers), set up their library, put up bulletin boards, organize the materials, and label classroom items.
Those interested in donating classroom supplies to either of these teachers can find their Amazon Wishlists below:
- Ms. Vanessa Paredes
- Ms. Rosa Martinez