At my school, the teachers report to school a week before the students. I named this week Zero Week because in The Air Force this is the first week of Basic Training, it doesn’t count toward the completion of Basic Training, but it is the preparation for the weeks to come. Much like Zero Week in the Air Force, this is the week that can make or break the school year and therefore even though it does not count toward the completion of the school year, many times it is the most important.
Typical Zero Week Goals
- Attend meetings while all you can do is think of setting up your classroom (at least 6 hours this week will normally be in meetings)
- Complete an evening of Meet the Teacher where 75 people will be coming to your room, finding their desk and judging if you are a good teacher for their child
- Set up your classroom, your desk, the student’s desks, make name tags, make binders
- Preparing lesson plans and make copies
- Meet with your team to set up schedules and share ideas
- If you have your own children, let us not forget running around at their Meet the Teacher getting supplies, etc.
I am exhausted just reading this list off, but after this week I am practically unconscious by the time the first day of school arrives. Every year it does get easier. Over the years, I add to my zero week file and now it is time to share ways to be successful this week without feeling tired before the year has even started. Your number 1 goal is to be done with zero week chores on Friday at 3. It is important to have a proper weekend off before the first day of school arrives.
See Part 2- How to Tackle Zero Week