Sunday, July 21, 2013

Let's Get Acquainted Linky: Advice for New Teachers

I love, love, love Latoya's linky party and it's time for another one!
Be sure to click the picture to visit Latoya's blog!!

This linky is all about advice for new teachers! So if you're a newbie, this post is for you!

I highly recommend you buy a laminator! Every school is different and they all have different laminating policies! You want to make sure that you can protect your hard work and use it more than once. Protect important posters, center activities, and so much more! They really aren't that expensive and can save you a lot of time!
I use this Scotch Thermal Laminator. Click on the picture to check it out on Amazon. Refill packs through Amazon are also MUCH cheaper than in retail stores!
Make a To-Do list for everything! There are so many things to do and keep track of when teaching that it's essential to stay organized! If you don't use an app or good ol' paper and pen to keep track of it all, you will feel overwhelmed within the first week! I still struggle with staying super organized and I have been teaching for over 4 years now. If you want to excel at only one thing in the beginning of your career, let it be organization because it will make everything else so much easier!
Grade papers during meetings! This also includes texting on your cell phone, surfing the web, or chatting with a teammate sitting next to you. Yes, I've seen a ton of teachers doing it over the last 4 years however it still drives me crazy! I just find it extremely rude and it does not make you come across as a professional. I apologize if you are someone who does this already, but it is very distracting to teachers who are there to listen and absorb information. Also, administrators DO notice what you are up to during faculty meetings, trainings, etc. Please be cautious of your actions.
Over the first few weeks of your teaching career, you will probably be assigned a "mentor" teacher from your school or grade-level which is always great! I recommend that you find a mentor teacher no matter what. If you don't feel supported by your assigned mentor teacher, then find another teacher that you get along with who is willing to help. Most teachers are more than happy to help and mentor! Don't be afraid to ask! After all, we are teachers... we are giving people! I just know that life can be soooo much easier in the classroom if you have a teacher that you relate to, have similar teaching styles, and share interests with.  
Find a way to make time for YOU! All good teachers want to spend countless hours in their classroom... grading papers, creating activities, making sure the reading area is just right, leveling or sorting classroom libraries, watching PD online videos, and the list goes on and on. It's important to do all of these things but it's also important to take time for yourself. You have to be able to separate yourself from your classroom at times and relax/decompress. Take a relaxing bath, or curl up and read a good book, or perhaps you like theme parks to de-stress. No matter what you enjoy doing for you, be sure you still find time to do it after your teaching career begins!
Always be flexible! The world of education is constantly changing. It will change within your classroom, within your team, within your school and within the nation and a good teacher will be ready for that. Don't get stuck in your way of doing things and be closed to other ideas/opinions. There will be teachers who have different views and opinions and different approaches to teaching certain concepts. That doesn't mean you have to do those different things, I just ask that you remain open and flexible to change. Be willing to change your classroom management technique from year to year if it isn't working for your new class one year. Be willing to attend meetings on short notice. Be willing to learn new standards. Just be willing to change and life will be so much easier for you and everyone you work with.
And that's my advice! Hopefully I wasn't too blunt for anyone. Just trying to be honest!
Be sure and check out the other bloggers that linked up! If it is your first year, best of luck to you!


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  1. Hi Daina! I linked up this weekend, too and buying a laminator is a great idea! Although I am not a new teacher, I did buy one so I hope it saves me some time this year! Hope all is well with you!

    First Grade and Flip Flops

    1. Leslie,

      It will definitely save you time!! Thanks for commenting!!

  2. Hi Daina! This was my first link up ever. I must say the Scotch laminator was one of my first purchases and it has lasted me throughout the years. It only cost $25 at Walmart and it was the most well spent $25. Have a good weekend.


    1. Congrats on your first link up Renessa!! And glad the laminator has worked well for you too!!

  3. Daina...insightful stuff as always! :) I am cracking up about all those times we created things and then were sitting around laminating them TO DEATH at every available opportunity! :) We need to buy stock in Scotch! :) The grading papers note was a good one! That bugs me too! :/ I used to think of myself as professionally flexible...but...I don't know if I'm as flexible professionally as the picture that you posted to inspire us! LOL! :) I will continue to work on it! :) Glad you're around to keep me loose like a goose! :)
    Great post, chick! :)

    Mrs.Russell's Room
    First Grade

    1. LOL Tamara!

      We sure did! And don't worry, I'm not that flexible either LOL!! :)

  4. Excellent advice!! I purchased my laminator about two years ago and was glad I did. My school does not have one! Found you through the let's get acquainted linky. I now following you!!
    Ms. Jones’ Junction

    1. Hi Crystal!

      So glad you found me! My school has a laminator, but they only laminate on Wednesdays making it very difficult sometimes! Glad yours has helped you out!

  5. It took me 8 years to finally get myself a laminator! Good advice!

    Literacy Spark