Thursday, March 7, 2013

Tips for Handling Teacher Stress

Stress!  It's part of all of our lives, isn't it?  How many balls can you juggle in a typical teaching day?

This is the time of year where you are starting to think, "OMG, Four months left and so much to still do!"

Here are some good tips:

  • Set your priorities!  Front load the hard stuff so that what's left are the easy things.  

  • Know that any activity you are dreaming up will probably take you twice as long to do well! 

  • Remember, it's so much easier to say "no" first and then rethink your decision.  If you say "yes" first and then think you've made the wrong choice, you'll have to backtrack. That can get complicated.  

  • Keep an organized calendar and a to-do list.  Keep them in one notebook or one place.  Use post-it notes if you need to.  Put them everywhere so you don't feel like you have to write on a piece of scrap paper which will inevitably get lost or placed in a pile of papers to correct!

  • Stay on task.  Yes, it's okay to have your classroom atmosphere be easy-going and for you to sometimes seize the moment, but lengthy or irrelevant digressions make it harder to stay focused on where you want to be.

  • Make your organizational systems simple.  Think to yourself about how someone else might know to find something in your classroom.  Label, label, label!

What tips to you have that you can share with us?   Add some of your own in the comments section.

While you're thinking about that, check out "101 Ways to Cope with Teaching Stress" at

Here are a few more stress buster tips from

Top Stress Buster Tips 

Lesson planning, late assignments, and a classroom full of kids make it easy for your stress level to boil over.  Here are a some of the top stress busters:
  • Secret Stash. Keep a few things that always make you smile in your desk. It can be anything from pictures of your kids, your dog’s first collar, a mini-Eiffel Tower from your trip to Paris, a bottle of sand from your summer getaway, lotion that smells like heaven, an Ernie Banks baseball card or your favorite candy. On your most trying days, take a momentary mental break from your class and your students and your crazy life by taking pleasure in your hidden treasures.
  • Let yourself take a "brain-free break" during a break or lunch period. Use it to play Angry Birds, read for pleasure, or to just zone out for a few minutes.
  • Forget about multi-tasking and focus on one thing at a time. Complete one task before moving on to the next one. 
  • Avoid teacher's lounge gossip.  It's unnecessary drama and no good can come from it.

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