Guide to First Year Teaching/What to Expect
As a teacher nearing the end of my first year, I have learned so much! A few things you can definitely expect:
Everything you think you know will probably change From what you expect from your students to your homework policy down to your lesson plans, you will discover things that work wonderfully and some things not at all. My classroom has not been the most organized or most efficiently run this year. So, I have already begun new plans for next year. The biggest thing I am changing is my homework policy. I did a really terrible job of getting my students to turn their work in on time, mostly because there was no accountability, but next year things are going to be different. I am also changing the structure of my classroom. Well, maybe I should say I am putting a firmer structure into place. I have learned structure is everything!
Students will test you As a new teacher, the students will try to get everything by you. They want to see what they will be able to get away with. You must begin being firm from the very start and let them know that you are in charge.
Lesson plans always change It is difficult planning lessons too far in advance because inevitably something will happen that will put you behind. Just learn to go with the flow, be flexible, and don't let it stress you out.
Spring is extremely busy When other teachers tell you this, BELIEVE them. I knew that the spring would be busy, but I had no idea it would be crazy. Make sure during the fall semester that you are using your time wisely and covering as much information as possible, especially if you teach a TAKS subject. When spring rolls around, you can expect lots of absent students for extracurricular activities and lots of catch-up work. Just be prepared.
These are only a few things you should probably know before going into your first year; there are countless others. Hopefully this will help!