Being a new teacher is harder than anyone will admit.
I remember my first year as a teacher, I had a 1+ hour commute each way on long country roads and cell phone service was quite spotty on my route.
I was teaching a mixed-exceptionalities classroom which was code for “students with learning needs and behaviour issues”. I was brand new to this type of classroom setting and was completely green.
Eventually, I found my way to teaching middle school ELA and Social Studies to Grade 7 and 8 students – my two favourite subjects.
Because I so vividly remember being a new teacher and the lack of support I received, I really care about new teachers. I have written two popular blog posts new teacher mistakes. You can find them at these links 5 Mistakes New Teachers Make and 5 More Mistakes New Teachers Make.
In this blog post, real teachers share their best advice for new teachers – to ensure you receive more advice than the old saying “don’t smile until Christmas”.
Advice For New Teachers From Teachers
- Teach your procedures and routines. Do not assume students will follow without a lot of practice.
- Be yourself – let students get to know you.
- You control the classroom – students can have structured choices.
- Don’t take things to heart. Students are kids and will say/do things that are frustrating.
- Don’t take too much grading home – this might not always be possible but try your best to make use of planning time and lunch hour at school.
- Be firm, consistent, and fair with your classroom management. Have a classroom management plan and stick to it.
- Teach children, not standards.
- Build relationships with your students
- Remember, the most important people in the building are the custodian, cafeteria workers and secretaries.
- When monitoring group work, stand by one group, look at another, and listen to a third group
- Don’t settle, but don’t kill yourself by striving for perfection.
- Be humble and listen to others’ advice.
- Be patient.
- Do the assignment before your students to dictate if it is difficult enough.