Things to Do and Watch Out For! As a New Teacher

Check out our list of things to do and watch out for as a new teacher.

Be wary of alliances within the school and attach yourself to one group of educators. This can be harmful if you do not talk to other educators, sit with one group of educators, and become a clique.

Find out that religion is a personal choice. Carry it to yourself and out of the class if you are teaching in a public school. If you must pray during the day, pray during your break or lunch. Don’t ask your learners to pray with you. This is a violation of the separation between church and state.

If you are a young high school educator, be aware of your age compared to your learners. Remain responsible for your actions and the relationships you have with learners. Address any issues before they turn into potential problems.

Search for books and journal articles that support what you are doing in the class and can offer strategies and techniques to use in the class. You can find professional reading resources in your school library. If you cannot locate reading materials, ask where the professional library is found in your school.

Adhere to other educators not only formally but informally as well. What can you learn from these observations? How will your students benefit? What techniques can you adopt for your class? Once you focus solely on your class, you have no one to emulate or learn innovative ideas from.

Throughout the educator evaluation conference, discuss what areas of improvement you need to work on. Formulate a plan to address these areas and keep data that show you have addressed the areas. Don’t wait for the administrator to tell you what they think. Either talk about it together or take the initiative to do it yourself.

Don’t hide your passion for teaching or the subject matter. Show your excitement. This contagious excitement translates into learner enthusiasm, which can be a motivational tool.

Model whatever it takes to affect student achievement. In other words, try many ways to connect with your learners. Write positive notes when learners gain points on tests, call parents with good news about behavior, and keep encouraging learners daily.

The Internet is a valuable resource. Utilize it to search for projects, info, lesson plans, strategies, and other materials used in class. Utilize search engines to guide your search.

Start service projects with your students. Learners must participate in community-linked service projects to foster relationships with their community or future communities. The benefits include a sense of accomplishment and a sense of belonging.

Allocate learners to help plan events in the class, service learning projects, and field trips. The learners have more ownership and will gain additional experiences as they plan and work together.

Keep a file of projects your class did for the school year. This will help you think of the year’s highs and lows. Analyze your portfolio prior to the next year to revise things that worked and areas that need improve- ment.

Understand the workplace is changing quickly and that you are preparing learners for careers that may not have been developed yet. Instruct learners to develop thinking skills that will transfer to any job or situation. Instruct a thinking strategy during a unit where a learner can practice the skill until demonstration achieves proficiency.

Increase your knowledge about areas that are indirectly related to what you teach. This info will translate into a deeper understanding of the concept and may apply to other subject areas later.

Take opportunities to expand your horizons, such as course tours of countries worldwide. Show your learners many experiences traveling to other countries and experiencing diverse cultures. Universities often offer inexpensive trips for college credit.

Ask your principal if you can visit other schools to discover what other teachers are doing to enhance learner achievement. Plan questions before you go. Maximize your time by visiting several schools. Utilize what applies to your class.

Remain willing to pilot new material if it fits the class curriculum. You may gain knowledge from the material and experience from facilitating learner learning. You might be asked to provide insights and data collection about the new material.

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