New Year Teacher Toolkit

This toolkit is for teachers who want to partner with their students to build intentional school culture and classroom routines. 

First, you’ll want to consider if you are setting the culture with a new class/cohort in the first week or implementing these activities as an intervention.

  • Interventions are for classroom communities you have been working with for over two weeks whose behavior, classroom culture, or academic environment you are responding to. Interventions do not mean anything is inherently “wrong.” The framing, however, should be tailored to partnerships with students and rely more on already-formed relationships and student leaders.

New Year Teacher Toolkit

Whether this is your first year teaching or your first year teaching in a new classroom community, you can use Re-Imagining Migration’s New Year Teacher Toolkit to help foster an inclusive classroom community.

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Recommended Order of Resources 

  • Implement the student belonging survey to get a sense of your classroom experience; this will allow you to re-survey your students a few months after implementation, reflect on developments, and plan additional action steps. 
    • If there is concern that students might not yet be comfortable providing authentic answers, you will instead want to conduct the survey after you have completed the other New Year Teacher Toolkit community-building activities. 
  • If timing allows, pair the Teacher (Re)Introduction with the Student Name Story activity. This pairing of activities enables the teacher to model selective vulnerability before asking for that from their students.
  • The Ecology of Identity activity can be an entire lesson, a homework activity, or done in the first 10 minutes to kick off class. 
  • If timing allows, dedicate an entire class period to the Community Guidelines Building lesson. This is the highest leverage activity to create a collaborative classroom environment. Leveraging student leaders to draft the guidelines on the board and call on their peers can allow students even more ownership over the classroom rules and systems.
  • The tracker is for your personal use. A strong practice is to set aside 10-20 minutes to complete the reflection section of the tracker so that it feels manageable every week. Having the opportunity to review your growth quarter by quarter will allow you to reflect on and celebrate your progress.