Self-care Tips for Teachers

"Self-care" is a bit of a buzz word right now. It's important to remember that self-care isn't just treating yourself to bubble baths, massages, pedicures, chocolate and wine. Self-care is taking care of your entire self (mental, physical, and emotional). Self-care should be activities YOU enjoy and should be practiced on a regular basis!

It's also important to remember that there are different types of self-care and that it will look different for everyone! You should take the time to identify what makes you feel refreshed, energized and relaxed. And if you're looking to practice more self-care, you're in the right place!

10 Ways to Practice Sight Words

Sight words can be tricky for our students to learn. It's so important to give students various opportunities to practice reading and spelling sight words!

I love using hands on materials and ways to practice with sight words. Many of these ideas can also be used when work on word work too!

Ideas for HEAVY WORK in the classroom

Heavy work has been used to help calm and stimulate students with sensory needs for years! You are probably already using some heavy work activities and you might not even realize it!

So what is heavy work?
Heavy work is an activity that either pushes or pulls against the body and provides the muscles and joints with input. Heavy work activities can be beneficial to EVERY student but can be particularly helpful for students with sensory processing needs. Heavy work can help students feel regulated and focused.

Independent Reading in a Special Education Classroom

If you don't already have independent reading time in your schedule, then it's definitely something you should consider! And don't say, "No way!" just because your students "aren't readers" yet or are emergent readers!

According to Fountas & Pinnel, "During independent reading, students read books of their choosing for a sustained period of time. Minilessons, brief conferences, and opportunities to share thinking support students' engagement with books and increase their competencies." 

If you want to read more about independent reading (including the benefits and set up tips) from the literacy gurus, Fountas & Pinnell, check out this link!

Structured Play in the Classroom

I'm all about teaching students to play independently and to play with other children without adult support (or with minimal adult support) in the classroom.
Play is such a great functional skill! Not only is play an important social skill... but think about it this way too:
At home: If children can play independently or with siblings without adult support- it can give families the opportunity to cook, do chores, or practice a little self-care without needing to constantly tend to the children.

In the classroom: If children can play independently or with peers without adult support- it can give teachers the opportunity to work in small groups or 1:1 with other students!