Are you a teacher who is qualifying this year? Getting ready to begin the big journey to becoming a full time teacher? Combined with a potential move to the UK this leaves many teachers with nerves and worries of what life as a teacher is really going to be like. Here we provide our top 5 tips to help you survive your first year in the classroom without a mentor!
Number 1: Prepare and keep up with your marking
Preparation is key to a good lesson and a key tip to survive your first year. Make sure you know how the lesson will progress whilst keeping room for spontaneity and discussion. The best lessons are not over prepared. They have a natural flow that allows the chance for the students to engage. In keeping with being prepared, do not let your marking fall behind and make sure anything that needs reporting to other staff members of the school is reported in line with policy.
Number 2: You’re not the first new teacher and you won’t be the last
Every teacher working in your school has had to start from the beginning. Do not be afraid to ask for help if you are having any difficulties. Experienced teachers and senior leaders will be there to help you, providing you with the insight and experience you need. Confidence is great, but don’t be so confident that you don’t feel you can learn from others.
Number 3: Keep it clear
You will need to set boundaries and have rules that align with school policies. You will have your own principles and you should keep them. They are important and they will be respected the longer you stay at that school. Your style and rules will differ to other staff members so make sure they understand the way you run your classroom.
Number 4: Don’t’ forget why you came into it in the first place
Most teachers don’t enter the profession for the money or the term breaks. They come in because they are passionate about helping young people learn, from primary through to secondary and beyond and they are passionate about the subject they teach. Don’t let this get away from you through all the ups and downs as there will definitely be plenty of both.
And finally…Number 5: Keep a work life balance
You’ll be keen to show how willing you are to help out. This is great and working in extracurricular activities and helping at school functions will demonstrate that you are a committed member of the team. However, remember to strike a good work life balance. We’ve all heard of teacher burnout so make sure you still get plenty of rest, keep up on the vitamin C and give yourself a moment away from the classroom.