Monday, July 30, 2012

Advice for New Teachers

Stephanie at Teaching in Room 6 is linking up posts about advice for new teachers. As I'm beginning my second year as a classroom teacher, I felt led to contribute.

Be humble. 
The best way to learn how to teach is to teach. Teachers are learners themselves. Embrace the mistakes and turn them into learning experiences. Ms. Frizzle says it best, "Take chances, make mistakes, get messy!"

Be confident. 
You know more than you think you do.

Get to know your students and let them get to know you. 
Just like students are easier to teach once you know them, students will learn easier from you if they know you and trust you.

Take time to have fun with your students. 
Really? Yes! Find a time to laugh with them. That will help create a positive classroom environment.

Ask questions. 
At one time your coworkers and principal had a first year (and they got through it just like you will). They probably asked the same questions you have.

Take time for yourself. 
You need to feel good and enjoy life if you want to enjoy teaching. Find an outlet; a place where you can go where you can forget you are a teacher. If you're in a new community, find some friends and get to know the area. That will help you feel part of the community as well as understand where your students come from.

Find a teacher-friend
especially if you're one of those people who just needs to talk about their day to get it off your mind. There will be times when you can't get the frustrations of teaching off your mind. Other times you will be bubbling with happiness from your day. Share it!

Follow a routine. 
After teaching a year, I realized that I could have 5 great lessons in a row, but they would not go smoothly unless I followed my routines (which developed throughout the year). Develop routines for ELA, math, science, etc. as well as transitions.

Read other teacher's blogs. 
They're wise and know what they're doing (thank you, teachers). :) Here are five that I follow on a regular basis, which I highly recommend (I should say five of the many I follow):

Teaching in Room 6

Teaching My Friends

Marvelous Multiagers!

Runde's Room

Corkboard Connections

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