Ten Top Tips for a Successful Teaching Career
1. Before you begin your first year of teaching, decide to teach a second year.
2. If you are not organized, get organized.
3. Do not look for love in the classroom.Look for respect. Look for student achievement. But do not look for appreciation or affection. The new teacher who is looking for love is vulnerable adn erodes the authority needed to lead a class. It is perfectly natural for the beginner to be uncertain and desire reassurance and appreciation. If it comes, fine. If it does not, wait.
4. Love thy school secretary. She is vital to the smooth running of the school and does far more than just send you notes when you have forgotten to turn something in. Not realizing the need for this information and for misjudging her power, new teachers often run afoul of the new secretary. This could be terminal.
5. Focus on Learning. The teacher must first discover what the students know and then develop a program that builds on that knowledge. If this is the one, other problems tend to be minor.
6. Don't get married right before school starts.
7. Pay your body its dues.... Stress is a fact of life with teaching. The demands of time and energy can lead to a loss of sleep, poor eating habits and little real exercise. Together they can lead directly to health problems, lingering colds, anxiety, depression. It is especially important for first year teachers to get adequate rest, nutritious meals and regular exercise. They are not luxuries, they are necessities.
8. Use your Mentor. Senior teachers who have fully mastered their own classrooms are often looking for challenges. Helping a new teacher can be a very satisfying experience.
9. Don't ask an administrator. If there is someone else on the staff who can give you the information you need, ask them. Refer to the administrator only the larger issues that require their time.
10. Consider keeping instruction rather traditional until you are confident you have established adequate pupil control. Traditional room arrangement for the first few weeks leads to the fewest number of discipline problems.
excerpt from FASTBACK: The first year teacher by Kevin Ryan