Does your school have a Meet the Teacher event during Back to School?
We didn't exactly have one… the school I taught at tried a few different events over the years to support students and families. As I'm listening in on other teachers' conversations, I think my situation was a bit unique.
As a special educator, I had to carve out my own style to make sure families knew who I was, how I can help, and definitely how to contact me. I actually ended up preferring it this way because I quickly learned:
I learned this the hard way – a.k.a. #dontbeme
The first two weeks of school is a flurry of activity (understatement) and systems are still being established – papers going into brand new backpacks, taking papers out at home, returning signed papers, and so on. You don't want to add your important information into that situation if you can help it!
I found it worked really well to be as visible as possible during arrival and dismissal and then wait about two weeks to send home more informal “Meet the Teacher” paperwork.
What should be included on a special educator's “Meet the Teacher” flyer? There's so much we can share, however we also want to make it as easy to access as possible.
I've seen some adorable brochures sent home that included fun “extra” information, like alma mater (Go Flyers!), favorite foods, quotes we live by… These can be wonderful ways to begin the important step of building relationships. I didn't often add those because I wanted to make sure my messaging was especially clear and easy to find.
Here's a list of information you may want to include – pick a few or as many as you'd like!
- Introduction – name, brief “about me” sentence or two
- Expectations – of yourself (think: mission statement), of students, and of families
- Contact Information – phone, school email
- School Contact information – website, office phone number and/or email
- General wishlist (hand sanitizer, tissues!)
- Reminder of classroom allergies
- Helpful websites for families
- School motto
You may want to also turn Meet the Teacher into Meet the TEAM – I think a family member may really appreciate having all contact information in one convenient place.
Here are a few template ideas to get started:
This Meet the Teacher template is in PowerPoint (easy editing!) and included in the Special Educators Resource Room bundle (click here to learn more). It includes ideas and tips, too!
Another template idea is to use Canva (💜). There are 10 template pages – all 8.5 x 11″- with a variety of styles, including introducing the entire team!
Here's a few pages from the Meet the Teacher Canva Kit:
The templates make it easy to edit and add your own information and picture!
I hope these ideas are helpful to you. I'd love to learn more about how Meet the Teacher looks at your school!