A Shrewdness of Apes

An Okie teacher banished to the Midwest. "Education is not the filling a bucket but the lighting of a fire."-- William Butler Yeats

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Tuesday Musing Open Thread 4: Suggestions for new teachers

For your consideration: What is the most valuable advice you could share with a new teacher in your building?

This time of year, there are thousands of people across the country who have been hired for a new teaching job. Now is the time for us to come to their aid! Put your comments in the comment section!

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12 Comments:

At 8/10/10, 2:45 PM, Blogger Kim said...

First of all, buy comfortable shoes. The initial investment may be large, but your feet will thank you. Even with comfy shoes, my feet still ache for the first couple of weeks.

Second, you don't have to grade every. single. part. of every assignment. I got so bogged down in grading my first year that I thought I was never going to see daylight. I also use notebook quizzes instead of collecting homework. Ten questions randomly chosen from homework and class notes. I always tell the kids, "If you do all the assignments and take notes in class, this will be the easiest 20 points you ever earned."

 
At 8/10/10, 6:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Find a mentor and quick.

 
At 8/10/10, 9:09 PM, Blogger Amerloc said...

Best advice I could possibly offer is "RUN!"

Go sell insurance. Get your plumbing license. Do anything but teach.

Because seriously? We don't need anyone who's heart's not in it

 
At 8/11/10, 10:37 PM, Blogger Polski3 said...

Don't be afraid to ask for help or to ask questions.

 
At 8/12/10, 11:32 AM, Blogger NYC Educator said...

Make friends with whoever runs the bookroom.

 
At 8/12/10, 1:36 PM, Anonymous bev said...

I work in a tiny yet struggling district that has had to pull itself up by its own bootstraps. Everyone does double duty, everyone works very hard, everyone is as energetic as they can be almost up to the last school day. BUT...this place can wring you out.

My advice is to learn to say "no." No to committees, liaisons, meetings, etc. Prioritize, then say no - especially if you have kids of your own.

 
At 8/13/10, 11:28 AM, Blogger Erin said...

Remember, there is something lovable about every single student, and part of your job is to find it. This is especially important in the beginning of the year when you don't know them yet as individuals and some of them are testing you--often these students are the ones who have the most problems with adults in their lives letting them down. This isn't to say you should put up with horrible behavior, but it often isn't about you as much as you think it might be. Even if a kid is making your job harder, remind yourself how important it is to treat them as if you care about them anyway.

 
At 8/13/10, 9:29 PM, Anonymous Jaqui said...

I second Kim and Bev's advice....

As far as grading, what you dont finish today will be there tomorrow, but your life continues to move on. Spend personal time with personable people and family. It will all be okay. The kids can learn how to deal with non-instant gratification.

 
At 8/15/10, 9:29 PM, Blogger maybaby said...

Don't get sucked into the "grade every night" hell. Pick a couple of days a week to do it. Try your best to not bring home work on the weekends.

Do your best to teach as if you have each student's parent in the room. It really helps in those moments when you just need to put your hands in your pockets and grit your teeth.

 
At 8/16/10, 6:36 PM, Blogger "Ms. Cornelius" said...

All excellent advice! I seriously push the shoe advice. The last time I wore heels to school was... never.

 
At 8/28/10, 1:33 PM, Blogger a learning teacher said...

Really? Thousands of new teachers have been hired? Where? I can't get work here with my master's degree, even half time. I'm working part time at a school about 45 minutes from home out in the country. I don't even have my own classroom.I graduated in 2009 and am still struggling mightily to get hired. My skills are roundly liked, I'm truly enthusiastic, and every interviewer says they like me; there are just about half a dozen openings for dozens of candidates, and this is a small community.

My advice to a newly hired teacher: be very very grateful. And hope you don't get laid off at the end of the year.

 
At 3/4/12, 11:37 AM, Anonymous puertas metalicas en valencia said...

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