New Teacher Training

Discussion in 'General Education' started by mrsammieb, May 19, 2018.

  1. mrsammieb

    mrsammieb Devotee

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    May 19, 2018

    This year we have a kind of large turnover of teachers. We have 6 teachers retiring and a few moving on to other schools. Also our enrollment went way up because we are in a new building. So my principal asked me to head up a new teacher activity to help them know the procedures and school etc. I was thinking of possibly doing a scavenger hunt to find various places around the school but now I am not so sure. I was thinking back to when I started at the school and I literally just wanted to get into my classroom and start setting everything up. It is so important to know the procedures of a school and where everything is located but also I don't want to waist their time. Do you have any suggestions to get to know each other, the school, and procedures that isn't so boring?
     
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  3. heatherberm

    heatherberm Cohort

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    May 19, 2018

    I actually think a scavenger hunt sounds kind of fun! It's one of those things that I would probably hate when it was first introduced but would ultimately end up really enjoying. It would be a fun, non-pressure way to get to interact with some colleagues as well.
     
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  4. Been There

    Been There Habitué

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    May 19, 2018

    From the time I entered the credential program at university until my retirement, I hated having to be subjected to activities that always seemed to be geared for children. I outgrew my third grade hat long ago, but was expected to enthusiastically participate in Simon Says, guessing games, elementary learning activities and even scavenger hunts at staff meetings, department meetings, PDF workshops and "professional" conferences. For some reason, educators can't seem to think outside of the school house when it comes to activities for grown-ups.

    I can see how teams of incoming college freshmen might be sent on a scavenger hunt to become familiar with a college campus - but, beyond that, give me a break! Must everything be turned into a game? BTW, do you actually think people will remember any better what they find on a fun-filled scavenger hunt? I once spent 30 minutes in a room filled with teachers completing a "fun" activity in which we all given a list of the teachers' names - had to talk to each of them and write something they were interested in. After all the raucous noise and chaos subsided, I still didn't know who anyone was! I guess it didn't suit my learning style. IMO, forcing working professionals to interact socially is not a good thing. Again, incoming college freshmen would love it!

    I think most teachers are smart enough to become familiar with a new building just by looking at a simple boring map. Getting to know each other takes time and cannot be rushed via a clever mixer with timed intervals. I would prefer quick and boring vs. "fun" and time-consuming, especially if I had a lot of important work that needed to be done. You might want to check with the teachers to find out what they would prefer to do instead of unilaterally deciding for them, but be sure to be specific (i.e. tell them you're thinking of a scavenger hunt and see how they respond).

    In a profession in which time is always at a premium, it would be a refreshing change and a welcome surprise if you would consider treating teachers like true professionals from the get-go - that is, avoid wasting their time. Let them know, what you were thinking of doing, but that since everyone is preoccupied with setting up their rooms . . . Contrary to what some might think, they will not have "plenty of time to do their work later" - later for many teachers means on the weekend or over the summer on their own time. I'm sure they would be most appreciative if you were to scrap the scavenger hunt for teachers/children.
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2018
  5. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    May 19, 2018

    I don't recommend a scavenger hunt. I personally hate when I go to PD and have to go through activities meant for children. In fact, I was just at a 2 day PD this week and all of my colleagues expressed the same frustration, so it's not just me. That will only be compounded at the beginning of the year when teachers are just thinking about getting their room set up.

    I would recommend putting together a handbook that teachers could refer back to if they end up having questions later; it's hard to get and retain all of that information at the beginning of the school year. Do a quick presentation, have a Q+A session, and pass out the handbook.

    If you want to do a "fun, welcoming" activity, invite the new teachers to a happy hour after school. That way it's completely voluntary; those that want to attend can go and meet everyone without having to do silly activities and those that aren't interested aren't forced to participate.
     
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  6. shoreline02

    shoreline02 Cohort

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    May 19, 2018

    I would HATE the scavenger. I much prefer what we do which is a folder with all the required paperwork inside. Each piece of paper reviews what new teachers need to know. We usually had a meeting for a couple hours to review some of the papers then worked in our rooms. The next day we did the same thing, had a meeting for a couple hours then worked in our rooms. Don't make them get up and do silly activities. Everyone dreads it.
     
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  7. Been There

    Been There Habitué

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    May 23, 2018

    So, what have you decided to do?
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2018
  8. TrademarkTer

    TrademarkTer Groupie

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    May 23, 2018

    I would prefer to see you in safari hat with a Crocodile Dundee accent just giving us a light-hearted walk through the school. Yes, I would want to see YOU making a fool of yourself. DO it up!!!
     
  9. mrsammieb

    mrsammieb Devotee

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    May 24, 2018

    We decided to just give them time in their rooms and we will give them each a gift bag inside with a map of the school, school extension numbers, and some treats and a few new supplies everyone can use. We are going to have everyone that is new get a mentor that is not on their grade level so they can talk with someone and check in on things.
    As for the safari hat, I would TOTALLY do that! I actually have a "twin" sister Ms. Gigi, that pops into my classroom from time to time to teach math. She lives in Australia and now has an accent (though, not a great one but the kids LOVE her).
     
  10. Ms.Holyoke

    Ms.Holyoke Connoisseur

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    May 24, 2018

    I will be a new teacher next year and I would hate the scavenger hunt. I think it was the right call not to do it. I always hate doing activities that are designed for younger kids. I would appreciate a quick tour of the school though.
     
  11. agdamity

    agdamity Fanatic

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    May 24, 2018

    Are the teachers brand new or just new to the school? I’ve always found it easier to mentor a teacher on my grade level. You just see them more, which makes it easier for the new teacher to bring up things they may be struggling with since you have more of an opportunity to develop a bond. Just my two cents.
     
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  12. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    May 24, 2018

    I agree with all of this.

    A Q&A session could be all that's needed, and happy hour is always nice!
     
  13. Been There

    Been There Habitué

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    May 24, 2018

    Excellent! Wish I could see Ms. Gigi in action!
     
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