Scared Teacher

Discussion in 'First Grade' started by ladycajun1105, Jul 22, 2008.

  1. ladycajun1105

    ladycajun1105 Rookie

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    Jul 22, 2008

    I am a new teacher, this is my first year teaching. I am going through alternative certification. I was feeling okay, but now I am quite scared. I just feel so unprepared.

    I have visited my classroom and there is just tons of stuff that does not need to be in there. I don't have the supplemental materials needed for the subjects, and several other issues.
    I don't know how many students I will have, I don't know if we have a schedule for when each subject is supposed to be taught, I don't know anything about the school, I don't have any experience with small groups. I am just a nervous wreck. I have new teacher orientation two days before school starts, I just feel that this is not enough time.
    I just need a little advice. Thanks.
     
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  3. CHI

    CHI Rookie

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    Jul 22, 2008

    Hello! You sound a lot like I was two years ago. I went through an alternative route to certification therefore I felt very unsure of myself and afraid to ask questions. I thought I was supposed to already know everything but, the truth is you learn it while you are teaching! The best advice is to make friends with fellow teachers. Luckily I was able to befriend a teacher who would answer my questions and guide me along. Most teachers will share their schedules with you so you can copy theirs and eventually you will become comfortable and rearrange the schedule to meet your needs (example: I hate doing math in the morning so I save it until the afternoon whereas other teachers prefer it in the morning). Come to think of it, most teachers will share anything with you if you ask.
    As far as small groups, I have been working on it for 2 years and am still tweaking it! Have a good behavior plan and that will help tremendously.
    Take a few deep breaths! I was nervous too when I began but I made it!!!
    Good luck! You will do fine!!!
     
  4. janlee

    janlee Devotee

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    Jul 22, 2008

    Do you have a friend who is a teacher? Perhaps that teacher can go to your room with you and help you go through some of the things you feel you don't need. They can also give you ideas as to how to set up your room (desk placement, book cases, etc) Sometimes an extra pair of hands and eyes is all that is needed to help you see that things are really not as bad as you think they are. Relax. Everything will work out.
     
  5. Ms Petunia

    Ms Petunia Rookie

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    Jul 22, 2008

    If your school is open to you (now)before orientation I'll bet you'll find other teachers working on their classrooms. This will be a perfect oportunity to introduce yourself and ask some questions. The school secretary will most likely be working in her office full time several weeks before school begins also. Ask her for the emails of some of the teachers you will be working with. You could e-mail them, introduce yourself and ask questions, this will help you build some confidence prior to the start of school. I agree with CHI that you will learn as you go along, don't panic. It's most important to work with the students on classroom rules and routines the first week or so of school. Plan activities you are confident in teaching the students and the classroom will fall into place as you get familiar with curriculum etc. GOOD LUCK. Don't forget you can always come to A to Z for support.
     
  6. ladycajun1105

    ladycajun1105 Rookie

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    Jul 22, 2008

    Thanks, I needed to hear that. I just felt that I was being buried alive for a minute. I have met both of the other first grade teachers at the school, we had a workshop together last week. They are really sweet and one has already offered to copy her lesson plans for me. I just felt that I should have already known what to do. Thanks CHI. You really helped me put things into perpective.
     
  7. queenie

    queenie Groupie

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    Jul 22, 2008

    That's exactly how I felt this past year!:hugs:

    I have been teaching at my church for over 20 years, had graduated from college with a BA in Elementary Ed and English 5-9, had three kids of my own (two of whom I'm homeschooling), and had been subbing for a year, and yet I was STILL a nervous wreck!!!!

    TRUST me when I say it's true that you learn as you go. After just one short year under my belt, I feel so much more confident. I have gone from being nervous about teaching to just wishing so badly for a job that I can't wait to hear something so I can just get started!!

    Take things slowly and make friends quickly with another teacher who can help you. Ask to see her lesson plan format, schedule, and anything else she'll share. I wish I had been more forward about that AND about asking questions. I was embarrassed to ask if I had money available, how much lunch cost for teachers, what time we were allowed to leave after school, etc. How ridiculous :lol: But I have vowed this year to ASK ASK ASK anything I want to know.

    Congratulations! And remember, if you are truly not prepared, it's not YOUR fault-- it's the fault of whoever says you're ready. Those higher up than us make those decisions, right?? But I'm sure you are as ready as anyone else their first year. It will come with time and experience...I keep saying that teaching is on the job training!

    Plan out your first day and it will get easier from there! And, as was mentioned before, get a good management plan and you'll do fine.
     
  8. ladycajun1105

    ladycajun1105 Rookie

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    Jul 22, 2008

    Queenie,
    I never even thought about asking about the cost of lunch. Thanks
     
  9. brandi0718

    brandi0718 Comrade

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    Jul 22, 2008

    The other 1st grade teachers will become your best friends! They are such a great source of information. This past year was my 1st year teaching. I was sooooo afraid! I had no idea what I was doing or how I would do it....I went into my classroom that had NO supplies and I didn't hardly have any of my own.....I didn't know how to do small groups...I had never even heard of reading being done in small groups but that is how they did it at that school......I learned really fast. I planned my schedule with the other 1st grade teachers...they shared the things they do with their class, etc. EVERYTHING WILL BE OK.....I think it is normal to feel this way.....Your first year will be hard, but you will feel some much better once you get one year behind you! I am sure you will have many teachers willing to help you...make sure that you ask....sometimes they dont know that you need help....do not be afraid to ask!! Good luck to you!!!
     
  10. ladycajun1105

    ladycajun1105 Rookie

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    Jul 22, 2008

    Brandi,
    I walked into my classroom and was looking for the teacher books and then found that most of the supplements were not there, so I really have to turn that classroom upside down to find what I need. There was so much stuff in a cabinet that had what looked like years of dust on it. I am a organized individual and a concrete sequencial so, I don't like the unknown. I like to have all my ducks in a row, so to speak. however, I work better under pressure, so I kind of wonder if I am causing all this panic on myself.
     
  11. nattiemae

    nattiemae New Member

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    Jul 22, 2008

    You'll be OK!

    You should be nervous - that means you care - which means you are a good teacher! Everything will be hectic but it will all fall into place as it should. Be attentive, assertive, and enjoy the adventure your first year of teaching will bring!
    Best of luck!:)
     
  12. brandi0718

    brandi0718 Comrade

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    Jul 22, 2008

    When I got to looking at my class last year I got so upset because I had NOTHING but desks and chairs!!!! 1st grade is a very hands on grade and I didn't have the money to buy the things I thought i needed.....everything worked out though....Go ahead and start organizing and don't worry about your schedule and things too much right now.....get your room ready and be thinking of ur management plan....then work on the schedule and things.....take deep breaths!!! It will all be over soooo fast and you will miss it! I can't wait until I can get into my room and start working.
     
  13. ladycajun1105

    ladycajun1105 Rookie

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    Jul 22, 2008

    I go to my classroom again tomorrow. I know that I want to do a ladybug theme; however, I don't have all my stuff laminated yet. I also will be using the management plan called power teaching by chris biffle and his five rules and practice techniques. I believe that a child should not be punished and that they must be responsible for their actions, so they must make a choice and at that young age all they really need is more practice in order to reinforce the correct behavior. Not yelling and punishwork. Setting the standard is what I believe in. I hope that this gets me ready.
     
  14. ladycajun1105

    ladycajun1105 Rookie

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    Jul 24, 2008

    UPDATE:
    I went to my classroom yesterday and got to go through much of the cabinets that have tons of stuff that I will not even get to use and some of it was just plain trash.

    I did speak to some of the other teachers and asked many questions, they were so helpful. There was also some teachers at the media center and the school board that gave me their email so that I can email them with any questions that I have.

    SO thanks for the advice everyone.
     
  15. love_reading

    love_reading Comrade

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    Jul 24, 2008

    I completely understand what you are feeling! I seem to feel stressed and overwhelmed when I am not organized, which happens this time every summer because my room is not ready! I have had to move into someone else's room 3 times. This will be my first year to stay in the same room, so it is easier but I am still stressed! The first thing I do is leave all my stuff at home. Then go to the classroom and locate all the teaching manuals and classroom books (for read alouds and library). Bring those home to look through and organize. If you are wanting to tackle cleaning out closets and cabinets now (and I always did) it will take some time if there is a lot of stuff. Push all your tables and desks into the middle of the room. Make sure you can locate a couple of huge wastbaskets on wheels from the custodian. Start with one cabinet at a time and sort...math materials go in one spot on the tables, reading in another, science, etc. Have one pile for give away and one pile for "ask other teachers". I say one pile for asking because you never know if it is something you are supposed to keep because it belongs to the district! Pitch anything trashy or very old! Then decide where you want to store things and begin putting them away in the appropriate places. If you have a Dollar Tree close by they have wonderful sterilite plastic shoe boxes that are great to store smaller things in. Once I get all organized it is easier to tackle room arrangement and decorating. hth and good luck!!
     
  16. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    Jul 24, 2008


    Just for your info... Lunch for adults is $3, at least in Caddo Public Schools.

    Welcome to the club, ladycajun! I, too, am a brand-new, alt-cert 1st grade teacher! I was blessed to be able to student teach, but I promise you, I am no less overwhelmed at times! Caddo just changed reading curriculums, and we won't get our materials - any of them, until 2 days before school starts! :eek: The best thing I can tell you is to grab a pen & a notebook & keep them with you at all times, as well as a measuring tape. Take notes about things you think of off the top of your head. Make to-do and to-buy lists. Order tons of stuff from VistaPrint :D When do you report for work? We have to be there on the 14th - actually, that's the first teacher work day in general - us new hires have to be "inserviced" for three days prior to that, and the kids come to school on the 18th! Oh, am I sounding a little panicky again? Sorry!

    Take a deep breath. They would not have hired you if they felt you could not do the job, and do it well. As a brand new teacher, you will not only receive a mentor teacher (through LATAAP), you should be buddied up with an experienced teacher in your grade level.

    You should have lots of people to lean on - and don't forget about AtoZ! These people are absolutely fantastically creative and incredible teachers - and they share it all with newbies like us for FREE! Gotta love that! :love:
     
  17. ladycajun1105

    ladycajun1105 Rookie

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    Jul 26, 2008

    Thanks pwhatley.
    we are using Reading Street by scott foresman. what are you using?
    I will be teaching in Iberia Parish
     
  18. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    Jul 26, 2008

    I attended 9th & 10th grade in New Iberia! Fabulous schools, at least they were then - I have no idea how they are now, lol! We are just now getting Harcourt Storytown. I won't even be trained on it until 2 days before school starts! I feel like I'm behind the eight ball, as it were, anyway - and that's just the icing on the cake! I'm in Caddo Parish
     
  19. ladycajun1105

    ladycajun1105 Rookie

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    Jul 26, 2008

    I don't know when we will be offically trained with the program, but I look forward to teaching this year. I have not put my classroom together physically, but mentally it looks wonderful.

    At least I know what I want it to look like, then I can just go in there and get it done.
     
  20. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    Jul 27, 2008

    I'm going through the same thing, so I can't really offer advice, but when I went to student teacher orientation last year the college dean asked if we were nervous and everyone answered yes. He told us if we weren't nervous he would be worried, because being nervous and scared means you care and you want to do well. For some reason that really stuck with me, and I keep reminding myself of it as I prepare for my first year. Good luck!
     

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