5 Tips That Will Help You Survive After School Children


School is out of session, and you are now responsible for children that seem to never want to do anything that you have planned.  You are used to only caring for children that are younger and that love any interaction that you give them as a teacher.  Now the children that you care to have an ego, never want to be that close to you and think that you don’t know anything.  They have the attitude that they are going to be bored and that they are way too old to be in childcare.  You as a teacher feel hopeless and have no clue on what to do with these miniature adults.

Well, that was me at one time.  I was really scared the first time I was told that I had to take over the afterschool class.  Half of the children were more significant than me and always had a growl on their face.  I decided that I did not want to be that teacher that was taken over by the children.  That’s all I could think of.  So I researched and researched and came up with a list of things that children age 6 to 12 liked to do and how to best handle the children that would be in the classroom.  I have put together several tips for teachers in an afterschool room.


  1. Treat older children with respect.  We should treat all children with respect, but if you want the respect of older children and you want to win them over you have to show them that you respect them as a person and as an individual.  This doesn’t mean that you are not to discipline or have consequences for their actions, but this means to make sure that you talk with them and not at them.  Talk with a calm voice and not with a harsh snarky
  2. Have jobs set up for all children in the classroom? If you help the children take care of the materials and give each child jobs, then you are helping them have respect for the materials, classmates, and teachers in the classroom.  Plus it makes a lot less stuff that you as a teacher has to do.  They will take it as you see them as a responsible child and helps them feel comfortable about their self.
  3. Keep activities that are hands-on and going. Make sure that there are many activities for children this age that is hands on.  Anything that you can allow them to do that utilizes all senses will definitely keep children engaged.  Allow them to cook, will enable them to build, to make extravagant art masterpieces, will enable them to continue the activity in a safe place if it is time to move to a different transition.
  4. Take field trips. Allow the children to have opportunities to get to know their community and areas around the neighborhood.  This is a great way to keep them engaged and to keep them interested in your program.  The more active field trips you can take the better.
  5. Have Specific Expectations and Enforce them. All children at every age but especially children that are older will try you every minute that they can.  So if you let them know right off the bat what you expect out of them and enforce it, then they will know that you mean business and respect you as a teacher a lot more if you hold them up to those expectations.