Tuesday, August 23, 2011
I'm joining in on Teacher Week at Blog Hoppin' and today is Teacher Talk Tuesday, more specifically advice for new teachers.
As mentioned previously, I am just starting to not feel like a new teacher anymore. Here is what I wish someone told me two years ago:
1. Don't go to your mailbox unless you have time to take care of anything that might be in there. On the first day of school, I usually have between 10 and 15 forms to fill out (many of them include giving money as well - PTO, PTA, Water club, Unisef, Sunshine Club, Birthday Club...). Take a pen and maybe your checkbook the first few days. Don't bring stuff back to your room! (I lost several things...ooops!)
2. Figure out a way to keep student records & current materials & future work. I already felt like a failure after turning in half the forms late the first few days of school but then I realized I wasn't keeping good records. Teachers started getting in trouble for their record keeping (I work in a district with wealthy families who call lawyers frequently so lawsuits are likely). Paper piled up like crazy, I spent 30 minutes preparing for meetings on my kids and by preparing I mean sorting through piles for work samples ect..I would prepare materials for something I wanted to do with a group in a few weeks and it would get lost in piles and never get done. After two years, I think I've figured out systems that work for me and I linked you to them above.
3. Keep quarters in your desk for the vending machine because their will be days when you need caffeine.
4. Don't sweat the small stuff. At the last conference day I went to, the superintendent said that teachers make on average 7000 decisions a day. Most of those are probably not huge decisions so keep that in mind when you start stressing out. I completely stopped caring what my house looked like my first year. My brain couldn't handle worrying about dishes in the sink as well as all the teaching stuff.
And most of all, Have fun! It will be a better experience for everyone if you are having fun.