The 8 Back-to-School Emotions All Teachers Will Recognize

Oh yeah, these look familiar.

The 8 Back-to-School Emotions All Teachers Will Recognize

For teachers, the end of summer brings with it a range of back-to-school emotions. It’s a very predictable arc. The ups and downs are a trip, am I right? Don’t be surprised if you recognize someone you know (ahem, yourself) in this sequence.

Phase 1: Shock

Gif of puppet and words What is this I don't even

At first you can’t even deal with the reality that summer is over and another school year is starting.

Phase 2: Denial

Michelle Obama saying NAH!

“But, I haven’t climbed that fourteener. I haven’t organized all my photos. I haven’t gotten my teeth cleaned!” you say.


Phase 3: Avoidance

I just know I'm not meant to do school right now.

You’ve been scouring Pinterest all summer. You’ve come up with a glorious vision for your classroom this year. You’re just not quite ready to execute.

Phase 4: Outrage


Excuse Me What GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

I mean, how can you possibly be expected to wear anything but yoga clothes and flip-flops? And wait. How many days of meetings are there before school starts?

Phase 5: Grief

Girl crying into tissue

If you’re a crier, like so many of us tender-hearted teachers, the tears will come as you mourn the end of summer.

But then you’ll see all the shiny new school supplies at the store and realize you might just be ready to get back into your routine. A tiny glimmer of hope appears.

Phase 6: Anticipation

Seth Meyers Lol GIF by Late Night with Seth Meyers - Find & Share on GIPHY

After all, you love your job, and you’ve REALLY missed your students.

Phase 7: Acceptance

Man laughing to himself and saying K

And a feeling of readiness and rightness will settle over you.

So you’ll dig into your teacher bag, which has been chilling in the back of your car since June, start making plans, and pull your professional wardrobe together as you enter the final phase of back-to-school emotions …

Phase 8: Excitement

Happy Oh My God GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

And you’re on your way. You’ve got this, teachers!

What excites you most about the upcoming school year? Come and share on our WeAreTeachers HELPLINE!

And, if you haven’t quite made it all the way through the emotional arc, read 25 Reasons You Might Be Freaking out Right Now if You’re a Teacher at the End of Summer Break.

The 8 Back-to-School Emotions All Teachers Will Recognize