Dear New Teacher… You Can Do This!

Teaching is a tough job.  Every good educator has days where they feel defeated – yet there are also many moments that make teaching an incredibly rewarding career.

Each year, when we get to host student teachers, I invite the staff to write words of wisdom. It’s interesting to see how advice changes over time.  This year, the themes include connections, joy and self care.

Here is some great advice from the staff at Laity View Elementary, encouraging student teachers and new teachers as they embark on an exciting career path:

  • Connect, connect, connect.  Cultivating connections with students and staff will make your life much easier and more fun!
  • Always laugh with your kids – that way you will always enjoy your classes.
  • When you are weak, pretend to the strong. When you are strong, pretend to be weak.
  • Get enough sleep.
  • Teaching has rewards. It’s amazing when kids learn how to read.
  • Every day is a new day.  Focus on one day at a time.
  • There are many people who appreciate all your hard work.
  • Keep all the happy cards / letters you get from parents and students – put them in a folder together.  When you are having a tough day, pull them out and read through them. It will remind you why you do this job.  It’s a tough job but so rewarding.
  • You are doing a great job… everyday… even when it doesn’t feel like it.
  • Enjoy what you are teaching.
  • Take time to develop relationships with your students.
  • Always be consistent.
  • Believe in what you are doing.
  • Don’t let those bad moments ruin your day.  This too shall pass.
  • The days are long but the years are short.
  • Always smile.  From now on, there will never be a dull moment.
  • It gets easier.  It’s never easy – but it’s fulfilling.  Find a friend that understands.
  • Make time to talk to your colleagues.  They are your best support and they truly understand.
  • PS – you don’t have to mark all the homework!
  • Enjoy.  Listen. Over plan.  It might not go the way it is supposed to.
  • Teach in the moment.  Forget the curriculum sometimes.  It’s ok.
  • You do you!  Don’t compare yourself to other teachers.  Be yourself.
  • You are deserving of respect.  Don’t let parents treat you disrespectfully.
  • It won’t ever be as hard as it feels at the beginning.  Before you know it, no one will be hovering observing or making you write reflections.
  • You got this!
  • Relax, breathe and have fun!
  • Your ‘teacher friends’ will become your best friends.  Lean on them for support.  They are the only ones who understand what you are going through.
  • It’s ok to show emotion. Let them see you cry during videos, assemblies, etc.
  • Always have wine on hand!
  • Wash your hands.
  • Get the flu shot.
  • Eat vegetables.
  • Don’t be afraid to try something new – personally and professionally.
  • Keep smiling.  Smile everyday as often as you can. The kids are definitely worth it and they smile back at you.  Everyone needs a smile.
  • Don’t go to too many pro-d workshops at once – it’s overwhelming.  Take in a small amount and make small changes.
  • Choose your battles.  Life is too short for crazy stress!
  • Take time for yourself.
  • Paint a rock.
  • Have fun.
  • Don’t worry about whether the kids will like you.  They will.  They will love you.
  • Don’t sweat the small stuff.  Sing “Let it Go” when the kids are driving you crazy.
  • Laugh every day.
  • Success is not final and failure is not fatal.  Just keep smiling.
  • Everything happens for a reason.  Be the best you can be.

Good luck Ashley, Rachelle and all new teachers!  You can do this.

 

 

 

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