March is a great month for starting your spring cleaning. Many people decide it’s time to scrub their house from top to bottom, change smoke detector batteries, and switch out their winter wardrobes. When it comes to school and students, this can also be a great time of the year to remind the students about our friend, Paco, and make some positive changes. Here are some tips for what you can do to help your students AND yourself!

For your students:

  1. Remind them that there’s never a bad time to make a positive change, but just like the seasons change and the flowers start to bloom, maybe they can also begin some new challenges. One activity to try is to have your students write down something negative that happened during the year that may still bother them. Let them crumple it up and toss it at the garbage basket! It’s time to move on and improve from that negativity.
  2. We’re about three quarters of the way through the year and it’s a very busy time. Goal setting can certainly be something that motivates students to change a problem they’ve had and achieve something new by the end of the year.
  3. There is more to positive changes than just academics. See if you can challenge your students to make a positive change outside the classroom. Can they get outside more? Spend less time on screens? Eat healthier foods? Make new friends?

As former counselors and teachers, we understand what state testing and end of year exams can do to your nerves and planning. Snow days and delays have certainly not made this year any easier! Don’t forget to take some time and make positive changes like:

  1. Try to be as positive with yourself and your students about finishing out the school year. It’s also a good time to remember that while most students (and you) can’t wait for the summer, some of them will miss the routine and you!
  2. Find some time to empty your email in-box, fill in your calendar, and clean off your desk. Taking a little bit of time for yourself to do these tasks can reset your positivity.
  3. Take some time for yourself! If you don’t have time outside of school to practice some mindfulness activities, see if you can fit them into your classroom! A 5 minute meditation or yoga session improves moods, postures, and focus.

The spring is a time of new beginnings and exciting futures. Allow your students to feed off that energy to get them through the rest of the year. Are there any other activities you do with your students to “shake off” wintertime?

PS – Don’t forget to change your smoke detector batteries 🙂