Harry Wong's "The First Days of School"-Still relevant?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by TamiJ, Jun 30, 2017.

  1. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2007
    Messages:
    6,754
    Likes Received:
    134

    Jun 30, 2017

    Do you all think Wong's book is still relevant and pertinent to today? Or, is it just to common sense and well known?
     
    SageScience likes this.
  2.  
  3. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    Messages:
    5,000
    Likes Received:
    568

    Jun 30, 2017

    I don't remember all of it as it's been about a decade since I read it, but what I do remember I still use. I think reading multiple professional books and taking the best from each make people better teachers, so I would still recommend it.
     
    czacza, bella84 and TamiJ like this.
  4. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2007
    Messages:
    6,754
    Likes Received:
    134

    Jul 1, 2017

    Thanks!
     
  5. GPC0321

    GPC0321 Companion

    Joined:
    May 24, 2015
    Messages:
    215
    Likes Received:
    123

    Jul 1, 2017

    I still have my copy. I honestly haven't flipped through it in a while, but that's because I've been teaching long enough now that I can usually figure out how to solve my problems myself. But in the beginning, I found the book very helpful.
    The book is good to me because when there are times that I just can't get a handle on something, it's usually best to go back to the basics and start over. Because what happens over the years is that I'm pretty sure a lot of Wong's advice is at the base of my classroom management, but it has undoubtedly been adapted and changed throughout the years. So it's good to go back and see the original advice and methods and start from there again.
     
  6. bella84

    bella84 Fanatic

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2012
    Messages:
    2,666
    Likes Received:
    786

    Jul 1, 2017

    I think that it's probably common sense to most teachers with experience, therefore making it irrelevant to us. However, for new teachers just starting out, I think it's one of the most important books they can read. I think this is particularly true if they are in a pre-service program that does not emphasize the importance of classroom management. If I was making a list of books for newbie teachers to read the summer before they start in their first classroom, I would definitely include it on the list!
     
  7. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2009
    Messages:
    3,009
    Likes Received:
    294

    Jul 1, 2017

    For the first 4 or 5 years I taught, I reviewed that book each summer. I never implemented all of it, but just the reminder to establish routines and procedures, as well as greeting every student at the door, and working on forming relationships with the students and their families. I don't need the reminder now, because I know what works!
     
    czacza likes this.
  8. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Phenom

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2005
    Messages:
    4,410
    Likes Received:
    142

    Jul 1, 2017

    My DH and I went to see him last summer. Still relevant. It's mainly common sense kinds of,procedures, which really never go out of fashion.
     
  9. Pi-R-Squared

    Pi-R-Squared Devotee

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2013
    Messages:
    1,052
    Likes Received:
    173

    Jul 1, 2017

    I'm gonna get Fred Jones' "Tools For Teaching" again. Again since I misplaced my copy that I bought in 2013!
     
  10. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2001
    Messages:
    24,213
    Likes Received:
    1,332

    Jul 6, 2017

    I did this too!
     
  11. Rockguykev

    Rockguykev Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2008
    Messages:
    1,896
    Likes Received:
    207

    Jul 6, 2017

    There are things about it I like but even more I honestly don't like the longer I teach. The entire section on building worksheets with objectives is pretty bad (which is like what? 1/3rd of the book?) I also think he takes procedures way too far - at least for secondary school. By that age kids know most basic routines. I don't need to practice how to use a pencil sharpener with 7th graders.

    I do love his first day seating chart trick and I've used that to great success for all 15 years of my teaching and the general idea of having an orderly but friendly classroom is obviously great. The nuts and bolts just need updating in my opinion.
     
    MichelleH likes this.
  12. MichelleH

    MichelleH Rookie

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2017
    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    5

    Jul 7, 2017

    I've come to believe that common sense isn't so common. Nevertheless, I think Wong's book is a bit outdated, and there are more applicable and updated books out there. Lemov's Teach Like a Champion, in my opinion, is a much better starting place and is what I steer most of my newer colleagues to these days.
     
  13. WordLover

    WordLover Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2017
    Messages:
    28
    Likes Received:
    8

    Jul 11, 2017

    I've recently finished a replacement leave position, having been hired just out of grad school. I wish I had known of Wong's and Lemov's books before. I now have my slides together for my next job (the ones we use to train and set rules and procedures). As a sub, I've observed the classes of some experienced teachers - ones that lack management skills. Even those teachers need Wong.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. GemStone,
  2. blazer,
  3. Guitart,
  4. gr3teacher,
  5. AlwaysAttend,
  6. MetalTeacher
Total: 422 (members: 7, guests: 297, robots: 118)
test