Suggestions for a new teacher!!

Discussion in 'New Teachers' started by BeccaK, Apr 1, 2008.

  1. BeccaK

    BeccaK Companion

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2006
    Messages:
    131
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 1, 2008

    I just found out that I have a teaching position in a first grade classroom! Okay I'll be honest...at first I was simply excited...now I'm going through a moment of complete and utter terror!! I am starting to second guess myself...wondering if I can really do this. I am almost surprised at the amount of doubt I am having in myself. Is this normal?!? I am soooo scared that I am going to screw up massively and have no Idea how to calm myself down. My professors have always had such confidence in me...telling me that I'm going to be great...but what if their wrong? lol see what I mean about the doubt? haha! It just doesn't make sense.... :eek: I AM GOING TO BE IN CHARGE OF SOMEONE ELSE'S CHILDREN....what if i screw up!! omg...please please please help me calm down!! :help: :help:

    okay :sorry: for the freak out...

    On top of all this...I have to figure out how I am going to prepare for next year...I have to do everything from set up my classroom to come up with materials. If you guys have any suggestions or tips please share them!! Thanks in advance for all of your help!! :thanks:
     
  2.  
  3. maroki

    maroki Comrade

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2006
    Messages:
    490
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 1, 2008

    First grade is great!!! You are going to love them. :2up:

    Is there any way you could get a copy of any of the teacher's editions of the curriculums they use to read through over the summer? That would save you a LOT of time at the beginning of next year and help give you a sense of what you'll be doing with a lot of your time.

    In addition, start thinking about fun things like if you want your classroom to have a theme. If you do, figure out your theme because a lot of decorations and classroom organization will come from there.

    Finally, figure out a way to organize your materials so that you don't become overwhelmed when you start having a ton of resources! My first year I filed everything away in a filing cabinet, and I found that didn't work out very well for me...I didn't use many of the things I had. I've since changed everything over into huge, 3" binders. Each binder is labeled with a subject name (and any sub-headings I might need) and then I have everything divided up inside behind labeled dividers. Now, when I'm looking for a holiday activity I'll just pull out the appropriate binder and flip to that section, or if I'm looking for a science project I'll pull out my science binder and flip to the subject we are working on. And whenever I find a new resource and get a paper copy (usually I print them off), I just hole-punch it and stick it in my binder.
     
  4. INteacher

    INteacher Aficionado

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2007
    Messages:
    3,765
    Likes Received:
    1

    Apr 1, 2008

    First - congrats :) on your first teaching job.

    Second - consider yourself lucky you have this much time to prepare yourself.

    Third - this is a great place to gather ideas, advice and confidence.

    So relax, enjoy your moment, gather all the knowledge you know you have and use the next few months to get ready to be the best first year teacher you can be. :)
     
  5. leighbball

    leighbball Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2005
    Messages:
    7,507
    Likes Received:
    1

    Apr 1, 2008

    Congrats!!!
     
  6. BeccaK

    BeccaK Companion

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2006
    Messages:
    131
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 1, 2008

    Thank you guys! I am excited!!! Very very excited...but I'm just as nervous....which I suppose is normal. I have been trying to decide on a theme for my classroom...any suggestions?
    I am supposed to meet with another first grade teacher soon so that I will get information on how they teach different topics and what kind of materials are going to be available to me. I honestly have no clue what I'm getting into...which maybe why I'm freaking out!!
    As for materials...well the day after I found out I was a first grade teacher I printed out all of my states standards and began organizing my materials to fit into each standard. Which also caused me to freak when I realized how little I have that fits into first grade standards!!! But like you said...I have a good amount of time to prepare!
    Thanks for your suggestions and support!! I really hope I am a great teacher...hopefully my nerves won't hold me back!!!
     
  7. Carebear05

    Carebear05 Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2007
    Messages:
    297
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 1, 2008

    Well its easier said than done to say dont stress because this is my 1st yr and well obviously I stressed out too. But just remember, as a 1st yr. teacher you are NOT going to be perfect. Even if you have been teaching for 31 years you probably wont be perfect. That is something that I have tried to tell myself this yr. You will always think of how you can improve things or how you could be more creative and whatnot. I always think of how I will do things next yr. Not to mention, there are going to be times where you think you know whats going on but you dont. Dont worry. It happens to all of us. You will learn as you go and you will grow.

    My advice to you, since you do have a lot of time (which consider yourself lucky because sometimes ppl get hired the week before school) is to look over yer standards, and find materials, resources, and technology things that you can do with your units, and organize them some way. Either into folders or 3 ring binders. I sometimes struggle to find things for my units because even tho I tried to find things before I started, I still have times where Im scrambling at the last min. to find things.

    I would also have to say with 1st grade, dont forget about creativity and fun! I tend to not think about arts and crafts until holidays. But my kids absolutely LOVE doing crafts and making things. This is something that I am going to try and do more of next yr. 1st graders like hands on things, so the more you do the more fun learning will be.
     
  8. Historyteaching

    Historyteaching Cohort

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2007
    Messages:
    724
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 1, 2008

    Congrats..this is my first year too. I came into my position 12 wks into the school year. I feel your emotions!! I think everything you said I've felt in one day..in one hour. My principal has told me a few times..you are not going to be like the dept head who has been here 30 yrs. , in your first year. It takes time. As others have said, you are lucky to have so much time to get stuff ready..I had Sat/Sun but made it through and I know you will too.

    Use that colleague as MUCH as you can to help you get situated and how things are done and where to find materials. My best resources has been other teachers to bounce off ideas and thoughts. You'll do great!
     
  9. BeccaK

    BeccaK Companion

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2006
    Messages:
    131
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 1, 2008

    Thank you for your suggestions! I agree in the lower grades the creativity is just so very important. I keep most of my materials in 3 ring binders...I agree with maroki...if i put them into folders I will never use them and most likely lose them!

    I can honestly say that I don't want to be perfect...I just don't want to "screw up" someone's kid...if that makes sense. I know I know...I can do this....I know that I can...well most of the time I know that I can. It's just times like tonight when I can't seem to get the possibility of failure off of my mind. My student teaching experience has been awesome and I have been exposed to so much. But I still have way way way more to learn!!!

    Gosh...I hope that these nerves calm down. I'm not sure I can handle my Parent meet and greet that I have coming up. I just need to calm myself and convince myself that I can do this so that I can convince the parents that I can.

    I am going to be working at a private school and these parents are expecting an experienced teacher...much to their surprise their gonna have me instead!! Luckily I have the other first grade teacher to guide me and make sure that I do not disappoint them.

    I still think that first grade is going to be a lot of fun! I simply cannot wait to get in there and get started. Hopefully that will calm me at least a little if nothing else.

    I just want to appologize for rambling guys....when I get nervous and scared all I want to do is get it all out...who knows if I keep typing I may be able to go to sleep sometime tonight! haha!!!

    Thanks again for everything guys!! You are just too great!
     
  10. Carebear05

    Carebear05 Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2007
    Messages:
    297
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 1, 2008

    Well most of the time parents want experienced teachers. But parents need to realize that #1- just because a teacher is experienced doesnt mean that teacher is any better and #2- all teachers have to start somewhere. You are going to have some parents who will be a pain in yer butt all year trust me. Sometimes you just have to brush them off. Ive just realized that no I may not be the greatest teacher, but I feel that I am doing a good job and Im the one with the teaching degree so I know a little more about educating their child than they do.

    And you cant screw up someones kid. If their kid is screwed up then they were probably like that before they came to you! :O) You just may be the person to fix it.
     
  11. BeccaK

    BeccaK Companion

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2006
    Messages:
    131
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 1, 2008

    Thanks for that advice...it really helps talking to another first year teacher. I mean you are going through at least some of the things that I am worried about. Is it strange that I'm worried about "screwing up" someone's kid? lol I love your response to that by the way! That is completely true...I have kids in my student teaching class that were screwed up long before they got into this classroom.

    At least I have had the chance to deal with rather interesting things. Heck I have one student that screams, hollers, cries, grunts, growls, and reverts to the fetal position on a daily basis. She's even thrown pencil boxes and books at my head. This, to say the least, was a very eye opening experience. I never would have thought I would have to deal with some of the things that I have. What really caught me off guard was that there was no punishment for this child (when she threw things at me) I mean I know that the child has something going on (which I referred her to the guidance counselor hoping for some kind of help, I mean obviously there is something wrong here ne ways this is totally off topic sorry)

    Back on task...haha...hopefully when I get into the school, get to begin working on my classroom and spending time with the other first grade teacher I will be able to calm myself even more. Hey I'm almost calm enough that I can sleep...which would be awesome being as I have to be up for work in about 6 or 7 hours!!
     
  12. Carebear05

    Carebear05 Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2007
    Messages:
    297
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 2, 2008

    Just make sure you ask questions! Even if you feel like you're bugging the others..do it! The only reason I say this is because there have been things that have been called to my attention thru the year, and they were things that I didnt think to ask and the other teacher(s) didnt think to tell me. I still ask questions because I know if I dont Ill never know. Keep in contact with the teachers youll be working with over the summer. I met up with the teachers I work with before school started to talk over things because honestly, once those workdays start you have enough to do as far as getting your class set up the way you want it, and putting things up, and laminating, and doing schedules, etc. You run out of time!

    1st grade is fun..dont stress it. If you make mistakes..just laugh about it. I always try to joke when I mess up and the kids love it. Remember 1st graders find almost anything amusing. You can have a lot of fun with them!
     
  13. Chevygirl97

    Chevygirl97 Companion

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2007
    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 2, 2008

    It's my first year and I constantly have moments where I look at the kiddos while they're working and have a little panic-y moment where I think "OMG I'm a teacher?"

    My advice? Believe in your ability. I went from amazing student teaching experiences into a private school where no one tells you anything. "Here's your classroom keys. Good luck!" Sink or swim. Believe in you and remember the reason you are there and all it took to get there.

    Most importantly? Don't get caught up in things. Something doesn't work--change it. If it still doesn't, change it again! Figure out what's right for your class. Learn from it and move on. Keep your head up!!

    You won't mess them up. At least that's what I keep telling myself! And enjoy being there and enjoy being a teacher. It took me until probably February to really relax..I was in such survival mode that I didn't get to do fun stuff.
     
  14. BeccaK

    BeccaK Companion

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2006
    Messages:
    131
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 3, 2008

    Thank you! I am not even in my classroom yet and I am sooo nervous! I think the private school setting scares me a little as well. I think it has its perks...however, I know that there is a difference in the "help" you get. Luckily I am a very flexible person and I do not mind at all if I need to change something...I know a lot of things I have tried didn't work out as planned.

    It's so nice to hear from new teachers that can understand where I'm coming from. I cannot wait to get in there and see how things go! Hopefully all this worrying will pay off and I will actually be prepared! (or atleast halfway haha)
     
  15. Historyteaching

    Historyteaching Cohort

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2007
    Messages:
    724
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 3, 2008

    I worry daily..my principal came in yesterday unexpectedly during my "hell class" He knows of the situation with them-they didn't adjust to my taking over as the other 5 classes did. Of course they were loud, two were sitting on the floor..but they were being good so I wasn't gonna make them move..he did. Each time something goes wrong I think omg am i gonna be fired. I walked into his office right after that class period and all he said was You are not going to be perfect..don't worry about it. We'll talk later. He knew what I was thinking..it was also the last day before a 4 day long weekend Thurs-Sun, and the 5th out of 7 periods..they were overly hyper. I come home almost every day and then talk to my mother a retired teacher who keeps telling me to calm down and that its first year oopsies and I'll be okay.

    So anywayy...don't worry about worrying. We are ALL doing it, we just have to get the total confidence in ourselves and KNOW we were hired for a reason and we CAN do this! First years UNITE! ..laughs
     
  16. BeccaK

    BeccaK Companion

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2006
    Messages:
    131
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 3, 2008

    haha!! That is awesome! I'm so worried I'm going to have a horrible class that I don't know how to handle...but I suppose eventually everyone gets that...
     
  17. Chevygirl97

    Chevygirl97 Companion

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2007
    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 3, 2008

    I was given the largest, worst class in the school. I wasn't told that until the second week of school---like I hadn't figured it out by the end of the 1st day:eek:hmy:

    We all get toughies--Im sure it won't be my last. But the way I look at it is that if I can make it through this I can do ANYTHING!! It's true, it really does all come down to confidence.
     
  18. Calliope

    Calliope Companion

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2008
    Messages:
    172
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 3, 2008

    Boy do I remember feeling that way. I was so excited & terrified. Being in charge! No cooperating teacher there to step in if I got in over my head. No one to ask a quick question if something stumped me. Yet somehow... it just all works out.

    You know... nothing says you have to say it's your first teaching job. When I started I was "lucky" in that I was older than most first years. I just mentioned that it was my first year at _____. Last year I was over at (the place where I did my student teaching). Hardly anyone even knew it was my first year. I didn't try to hide it. It just didn't come up, & I didn't volunteer the information.
     
  19. katrinkakat

    katrinkakat Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2006
    Messages:
    1,577
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 4, 2008

    I did the exact same thing Calliope! I had taught Head Start but never in an elementary classroom, and I just said that I have been teaching 8 years and this is my first year at such and such school, and I'm so happy to be here because I hear it is a great school! :) I wasn't about to say I had never taught elementary grades, or I had never taught Kindergarten before. Turn your negatives into positives. :)
     
  20. BeccaK

    BeccaK Companion

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2006
    Messages:
    131
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 4, 2008

    See I'm not that lucky...they all know that I'm a first year teacher. The Headmaster made sure of that...so that they would be more open to "helping me out".
     
  21. Ms.Sophie

    Ms.Sophie New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2008
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 10, 2008

    Hi Beccak! I'm not a teacher...yet! But I can feel your excitement and nervousness. I know that that' how I'll feel too when I'm finally a teacher. Congratulations and good luck!! :)
     
  22. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2007
    Messages:
    5,621
    Likes Received:
    5

    Apr 10, 2008

    Congrats on the job. I'm gonna agree with the others that you should consider yourself lucky that you have this much time to prepare. Definately start thinking about a classroom theme, decorations and an organizational system. Don't freak out so much, you're not going to be perfect. None of us are. If you show me a teacher who says her first year went just swimmingly, I'll show you a bald faced liar. Accept that there are going to be "those" days, and log in here for tons of great advice and ideas.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. Milsey,
  2. vickilyn,
  3. K2fun,
  4. tigger88
Total: 348 (members: 6, guests: 318, robots: 24)
test