TeacherLists Blog

10 Things Teachers Love About Returning to School

When the COVID-19 pandemic closed schools, teachers found they missed a LOT about the typical school day. Here are some of the things teachers say they are thrilled to experience again as their schools reopen.


The Daily Routine

TikTok user @iammistermba was so happy to return to school in March 2021 that he created a video using Taylor Swift songs to express his feelings. He starts with by celebrating the end of online learning while closing a laptop to the tune of “We Are Never Getting Back Together.” The video uses a string of other Taylor Swift songs suitable to the first day back teaching in the classroom to shushing students who are being too loud.



Returning to school according to Taylor Swift ☺️ #iammistermba #fyp #relatable #backtoschool #school #iwd2021 #womensday #taylorswift

♬ original sound – iammistermba

Seeing Students Smile

Sure, students smiled sometimes during online learning, but it just wasn’t the same as seeing a beaming kids play with friends on the school playground. This elementary special education teacher was thrilled to see her students’ faces when they were able to play face mask-free outside during recess.


Meeting Students Face to Face

In some places where schools reopened in the spring, teachers were glad to be in the same room with their students for the first time before they advanced to the next grade. At Sanchez Middle School in El Paso, Texas, Lexana Alfaro was thrilled to meet her 8th grade students before they moved up to high school.


Student Hugs and High-Fives

Anne Lefebvre wrote about all the things she missed about pre-pandemic teaching for Bored Teachers. Close contact with students—fist bumps, high-fives, and handshakes—topped the list. “Above all, I miss answering ‘Yes, of course!’ to the question, “Can I have a hug?” Lefebvre wrote.


Hands-On Teaching Tools

While teaching from home, many teachers found that they missed school equipment like the copy machine or laminator. This teacher can’t wait to get back to the classroom in fall 2021, and to teach using math manipulatives again.


Electronic Whiteboards and Classroom Helpers

We bet this isn’t the only teacher who missed teaching with a smart board while schools were closed, just as much as she missed “that one kid that practically runs class for me.”


Schoolday Sounds

As teachers and students return to the school building, some teachers are realizing how much they missed the sounds of kids laughing in hallways or even the beep of the school copy machine. This teacher on TikTok shared a video of teacher ASMR that included the sounds of flipping pages of stapled homework assignments and reshelving classroom books.


Teacher ASMR #teacherasmr #dayinthelife #teachersounds #classroom #dayinthelifeofateacher 💡cred to: @mrs.woolleyin5th

♬ original sound – Pam

Kids Being Kids

This teacher missed the funny things her students did in class, like Kobe Bryan impressions and the hearing the never-ending question: when’s recess?


Student Behavior 9 with Becky Perry #teacherlifebelike #teachers2020 #tiktokteachers2020 #teachercomedy #BeKind #asianteachers #parentsoftiktoks

♬ original sound – rebecca schlafer

Time With Teachers

Many teachers missed the company of other teachers and have been glad to get back to lunches in the staff room and conversations between classes. In a humorous TikTok, Jay Salazar talked about missing the long line of teachers making a last-minute coffee run before homeroom begins, even if teachers shared spoilers for TV shows.


🥺🥺🥺 #teacher #teachers #teaching #teach #tiktokteacher #teachersoftiktok #onlineteaching #remotelearning #school

♬ original sound – TheJaySalazar

Everything, Even Lunch Duty!

Early in the pandemic, We Are Teachers asked for teachers to tweet about what they missed most about school. The wide-ranging responses included hearing students tell jokes, the sound of the bell ringing, and even doing lunch duty. You can read about responses here or check out the original Twitter thread.


Originally posted 2021

Monthly tips, ideas, giveaways, and help.

Bonus: Get free teacher-theme Zoom backgrounds when you subscribe!

Wanna say something?