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One of my teacher friends who was a few years older than me gave me an emergency kit for my desk during my first year of teaching and it was a life saver over and over. Here’s what you need to fill up your own kit…

Start with a box

It could be anything – a pencil box, a storage bin, a shoe box. Just make sure the size of the box will fit in your desk! For bonus points, decorate it in a way that will make you smile.

Add this to your box for music related emergencies…

  • Your Favorite Music Mementos – there will be days you will feel like you want to give up. I have a pin from my time in Tau Beta Sigma You need to remember why you pursued this career path in the first place.
  • Notes & Letters from Students – similar to the first bullet, you need reminders some days!
  • Small Bottle of Mouthpiece Cleaner – I like to have an extra tiny bottle in my stash for emergencies because germs…ick
  • Extra Set of Undergarments & Clothes – This might not fit in box but good to have on hand. I often changed after school for marching band and there were a few days that I went to the marching band field in a dress because I had forgotten clothes(see picture to the right…).

Add this to your box for sick related emergencies…

  • Tissues – go for the high quality ones with lotion
  • Cough Drops/Throat Coat/Sore Throat Miracle Workers – singing is tough, especially when you’re sick
  • Tea Packet with Honey – again, good for sore throat days
  • Painkiller of Choice – headaches, back aches, knee aches (all the aches…)
  • Hand Sanitizer – I like to get the “stress free” scent from Bath and Body works. Get something that smells good

Add this to your box for every day related emergencies…

  • Deodorant – it is inevitable that you will forget one day (travel size works best)
  • Chapstick – you will need it, especially when it’s dry out there
  • Lotion – travel sized is great for a small box
  • Breath Mints – one day you’re going to eat garlic for lunch and forget you have a parent teacher conference…trust me on this one
  • Granola Bar – you’re bound to be real hungry and without food. I try to avoid chocolate because I know I won’t be able to eat just one or two pieces if I am super hungry.

Add this to your box for stress related emergencies…

  • Picture(s) of loved ones – I like to keep 2-3 pictures of the people who make me smile the most
  • $5-$10 Giftcard to Your Favorite Coffee Shop – I much prefer this pick-me-up to chocolate. I will treat myself after school to a large beverage rather than binging on a bag of candy. I also like that it’s a pre-planned amount so I don’t feel like I have to cope from a stressful day with retail therapy.
  • De-stress Essential Oils – if you like essential oils, pop one that is supposed to help you feel less stressed into your box and dab a little on you wrists and the backs of your ears for some aromatherapy.
  • A Letter to Yourself – this may seem silly but write your future stressed out self a letter of encouragement. Make sure you write this letter at a time where you feel refreshed and excited. Remind your future self why you do what you do. Sometimes it’s hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel when you’re in the middle of it!

Do you have a music teacher emergency kit? What’s in yours that I’m missing?

2 Comments

  1. Ellen Ambler

    These are nice ideas of things to keep you going! I have kept waaay more practical things in my box like safety pins, clear nail polish to stop runs in my nylons, Advil, hair spray, etc. I like you included sentimental things – these can be GREAT motivators!

    Reply
    • Michelle

      Those are also all great things to add – especially the safety pins!

      Reply

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