Meeting the previous teacher

Discussion in 'New Teachers' started by andstuff, May 4, 2015.

  1. andstuff

    andstuff Rookie

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    May 4, 2015

    I will be starting my first teaching job in August of 2015. I will be going into the school tomorrow to sign my contract and talk to the teacher I am taking over for (she is retiring.)

    Are there any questions I should be asking her to make my first year easier?

    Is it appropriate for me to ask her to leave anything she doesn't want to take with her?
    I figure she has been doing it for 20+ years so while I may have a different spin for certain lessons recycling some stuff couldn't hurt. However, I don't want to come across as lazy.... kind of like working smart not working hard.
     
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  3. ms.irene

    ms.irene Connoisseur

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    May 4, 2015

    Congratulations on your new job!

    What grade level is this for? I took over a one-year leave replacement for a teacher who took medical leave (just covering one class) and met with her at the beginning of the year. I asked as much as I could think of about the student population, pacing, curriculum, projects, etc, and made sure to be gracious and thank her for her time. It was a little different situation since she was coming back the next year, but I think in your situation, if you're being offered the chance to meet with the outgoing teacher, you might as well take advantage of the opportunity and ask anything you can think of!
     
  4. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    May 4, 2015

    I think you could ask about class supplies/materials by asking her, "Can you please tell me which materials in the classroom belong to the school and which materials are yours that you will be taking with you so that I can begin preparing to purchase the things I will need?" This gives her the opportunity to offer to leave anything she doesn't want behind, without sounding like you want to take her personal belongings for free.
     
  5. andstuff

    andstuff Rookie

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    May 4, 2015

    It is for 6th, 7th and 8th grade science.

    I also can watch her teach a class, though I am not sure how this will benefit me. I asked if I could and they said sure, but now I am not sure how it will benefit me (other than seeing her teaching style.)
     
  6. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    May 4, 2015

    This is a great idea. You can also come right out and ask her to feel free to leave copies of handouts if she has any.
     
  7. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    May 4, 2015

    I don't think that this will benefit you at all. If you were temporarily covering her classes and wanted to emulate her style for a smooth transition for students, that's one thing. But this will be your class and your classroom, so you need to make it your own. You don't need to see how she does things if you're confident that you will find your own way to do them.
     
  8. andstuff

    andstuff Rookie

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    May 4, 2015

    This is my thought exactly. I asked if I could during the spur of the moment on the phone. After I got off and started thinking that it won't do me any good. Probably just waste my time and make her a little uncomfortable with me just sitting there in the room.
     
  9. ms.irene

    ms.irene Connoisseur

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    May 4, 2015

    I don't know, if you have the time, I personally think it never hurts to observe other teachers in action. Just don't feel like you have to emulate her or "be" her -- it will still be your class and you will develop your own style. But you might get some good ideas from watching someone else that you wouldn't have thought of otherwise.
     
  10. MissPapa

    MissPapa Comrade

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    May 11, 2015

    Congrats! A lot of times, teachers do leave stuff behind. I got a classroom full of stuff when I started last September (some being unnecessary, but better than an empty classroom, no?)
     
  11. Switch

    Switch Rookie

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    May 25, 2015

    I don't think it hurts to watch but- when you are watching the actual previous teacher you might be comparing yourself and you might unconsciously be reaching for a weird standard that you don't need to emulate. Accept that you won't be perfect and that this year you will be learning and growing a long with your class and for that reason you are a fantastic teacher. Let ur moto be ill figure this out and self assess constantly. I think a lot of teachers stop and go on autimatic pilot but searching and commitment to learning from you makes you as valuable experienced but doesn't see the point of this or that.
     
  12. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    May 25, 2015

    This is perfect
     

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