As our nation’s educators prepare to go back to school, remember that new teachers make up a considerable portion of the profession. According to Education Week®, about 12% of public school teachers are in their first or second year on the job. Help support and welcome the new kids on the block with these tips and teacher giveaway ideas.
- Communicate: Phone calls, emails, meetings and more—constant communication occurs during the hiring process. Yet, post-hire, this regular contact often dwindles, creating nervous anticipation before their first day. Check in with a phone call a few weeks before their start date. Offer specifics on where to go, what to expect, and whom to contact if they need help. Schedule an in-person meeting on day one. Use this time to discuss goals, offer support and welcome your newest team member. A welcome basket is a great way to start the day. Fill a branded bag with school swag, like a logo T-Shirt and chalkboard tumbler.
- Host a welcome breakfast: Host a welcome breakfast or luncheon for all staff before the first day of school to help new teachers get to know fellow staff members. Use the gathering as an opportunity to provide important updates and get staff excited about and prepared for the year ahead. Place a vase of flowers at each table that doubles as a welcome gift. A milk bottle makes a fitting container. Imprint it with a saying, such as “The influence of a good teacher can never be erased.”
- Create mentorships: Pair new teachers with a mentor. This person should be their go-to for questions, comments, concerns and support. Mentors can show them around the school, meet for lunch, and share triumphs and challenges. Schedule regular check-ins to keep communication going. And provide a list of “things to know” about your school—for example, what lounge has the best coffee, how to reach custodial services during class, or where to get IT support. Mentors can write these “must-knows” in a logo notebook that doubles as a welcome Encourage newbies to use this teacher giveaway to jot questions and notes.
- Be a good neighbor: Some teachers may be new to the community, so roll out the welcome wagon. Offer insight on your favorite restaurants and cafes, parks or entertainment venues. Invite new staff members to your networking or young professionals’ groups. Or host a staff movie or game night, complete with refreshments and raffles. School swag, like this logo hoodie and mason candy jar, are A+ prizes.
There’s no doubt about it—our nation’s teachers are a class act. On average, an educator affects more than 3,000 students during their career. And 88% of people say that “a teacher has had a significant, positive impact” on their life. Show your appreciation for the impact your newest team members will make by helping them feel welcome with these tips and teacher giveaway ideas.