Where did the time go? It seems like summer break just started yesterday. Yet it is the end of July already and many Georgia schools start opening their doors next week. Just like students, teachers have to prepare to go back to school - mentally, emotionally and physically.

Perhaps you spent the summer sleeping in and working on home enhancement projects? Now you’ll have to get back into the routine of getting up early and navigating through traffic to get to school. You’ll have to get ready to meet new students, new administrators and fellow teachers and digest Common Core standards and possibly new standardized tests.

So how are you preparing to go back to school? We’d like to hear from you! Post your best advice so that other teachers can benefit. Below I’ve curated five tips from other teacher/writers and bloggers. See if you agree. What advice would you give?

  • Develop your unique teaching philosophy: Yahoo Contributor Network writer Kristin Ketteringham recommends evaluating your teaching approach before returning to the classroom. Make sure you know what your feelings and standards are with regard to the profession for this school year. Ketteringham also offers how to develop a teaching philosophy based on her own experience.
  • Practice using technology in the classroom: Education in America advises performing a “dry run of any technological devices” that will be used during the school year, especially the hardware students will be handling. It’s also a good idea to research new technologies, i.e. apps, websites, digital streaming services (hint: have you explored PBS Learning Media?) and try them out in order to incorporate them at school.
  • Familiarize yourself with school policies: About.com writer and veteran high school teacher Melissa Kelly suggests that teachers learn their school’s policies. This suggestion is not only very important for new teachers but for everyone. Given how social media has impacted how teachers can interact with their students and maintain an online presence, it’s vital that teachers know their school’s stance on the subject.
  • Get organized: Technology teacher and writer Tammy Andrew stresses getting as organized as possible. Put together folders for lesson plans and handouts. Straighten up the classroom: desks, cabinets, drawers. Review old lesson plans to determine whether they can be recycled. Find new ones.
  • Get to know the teaching and school support staff: Education World tells teachers to make friends with the school staff as they can be powerful allies. Also reach out to fellow teachers in the same grade level or subject and share advice.