When did you stop feeling "new?"

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Croissant, Dec 27, 2012.

  1. Croissant

    Croissant Comrade

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    Dec 27, 2012

    I'm halfway through my second year, but I often still feel clueless, unprepared, and uneffective. Everyone else is constantly telling me what a great job I'm doing and sincerely forgetting how inexperienced I still am, but I guess I have higher expectations of myself. We have a few first-year teachers on campus this year, and they come to me as their kind of unofficial mentor because I'm the person who has most recently been where they are, but I often feel like I should still be grouped with them! I know a lot of it is a confidence problem that I've always struggled with and part of it is my over-achieving personality, but there are days that I feel completely unsure of myself in my classroom and am constantly doubting myself.

    I know the best teachers are constantly learning and bettering themselves. You never get to a point where you're the best you can be. What I want to know is when did you all reach that point of complete comfortable confidence? How long had you taught before you consistently had that "I got this" feeling?
     
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  3. mcqxu

    mcqxu Comrade

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    Dec 27, 2012

    I'm not exactly sure. This is my second year at my school, although I taught for a few years before this position. While I know I still have a lot to learn, I do feel much more confident this year. I've also noticed that other teachers in my school have seemed to show me a little more respect this year - last year it was always "that's how we've always done it, this is how it is done", and I just went along with it. This year I feel I have more of a voice when conflicts arise and in other discussions.

    I do understand the feeling of being ineffective from time to time, and I imagine that even many veteran teachers experience this sometimes. However, it is important to Believe in yourself and what others are telling you about your performance, and keep it up!

    Happy Holidays:)
     
  4. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Dec 27, 2012

    One of our teachers is in her third year and she says that's she's finally getting into the swing of things, and it's a lot easier, so maybe it's year three?

    It's my first year, I can't really say. xD
     
  5. mkbren88

    mkbren88 Cohort

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    Dec 27, 2012

    I felt the best during my third year. Now I'm in my fourth year, but feel like a brand new teacher learning all over again. New school district (from charter to public), new grade, new standards and new evaluation system (when never evaluated before.).

    Keep up the good work and your confidence in your abilities will grow.
     
  6. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Dec 27, 2012

    Thinking about things, it took me one year to get used to the school and an additional year to get fully comfortable with the material. Three years is about right.
     
  7. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    Dec 27, 2012

    In was about 5-6 years in. Until then I was always in a new building or job.
     
  8. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    Dec 27, 2012

    4th year for me!
     
  9. Ms_C

    Ms_C Comrade

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    Dec 27, 2012

    I have been a full time teacher for 4 weeks now; I'll let you know when I figure it out.
     
  10. monsieurteacher

    monsieurteacher Aficionado

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    Dec 27, 2012

    I've taught for five years... I still feel somewhat new, but I've never really taught the same thing twice either.
     
  11. Resentful

    Resentful Rookie

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    Dec 27, 2012

    Less than a year. On the first day of school, I didn't feel like a new teacher. In spring of 2012, the teacher I'm covering for went on longterm leave. I took over her class. She was basically burned out, so I was making lesson plans and doing everything from like the second week on. Really the first week, but I wasn't writing lesson plans. I was using emergency plans and sort of filler things. I had a hard time believing someone would just leave a sub holding the bag like that. This year, she retired I'm basically the teacher, but on a sub's salary. I think a LOT of it is I'm in the same school, grade, and room. I also felt more like a veteran because my next door neighbor is a teacher with NO experience straight from student teaching the past year.

    I think what also helped to a degree was I've never had a job that didn't involve working with students and/or education. I remember during my student teaching knowing how to deal with parents while the other student teachers were so intimidated. I think that's one of the biggest flaw in American teacher education. There's not enough field experience. If someone happens to be hired without subbing or the job experiences I've had before student teaching, you have someone who has very little experience working with minors and/or parents.
     
  12. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    Dec 27, 2012

    By the end of the first week. That's a little bit of an exaggeration but my school is small so I know almost everyone and spend a lot of time with them. That helps :)
     
  13. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    Dec 27, 2012

    In my first position I would say I adjusted within a couple of months. My second year there I truly felt like a "veteran" teacher even though of course many of the "veterans" had been teaching there for 15 years or more. Then I started a completely different type of position in a different school, and I felt like a brand new teacher all over again! It only took me about a month to get really comfortable with my team. As far as the rest of the job though, there are things that make me feel "new" on a daily basis!
     
  14. FourSquare

    FourSquare Fanatic

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    Dec 27, 2012

    I could have written this! We have 5 first year teachers at my school this year out of 60+ teachers. In a huge school, it's kind of easy for them to get lost in the shuffle. Since most of the staff has been there quite a few years, I end up talking with them the most. My principal asked me to go in and observe one who was struggling to offer advice, and I was like :dizzy: "Why?" :lol: "I don't know anything about anything!"

    I definitely feel more confident than last year, but I don't feel "good" yet. Not even close. I've spent some of Christmas break just reading about teaching reading and trying to make sure I am doing best practices. I hope I always want to be better! Otherwise I need to throw in the towel. :unsure:
     
  15. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    Dec 28, 2012

    I felt less "new' in my 3rd year. I did switch schools at the end of my 3rd year, and taught a different grade level. It took me a year to get my bearings at the new building.
     
  16. Em_Catz

    Em_Catz Devotee

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    Dec 28, 2012

    I'm on my sixth year of teaching and everytime I think I've seen it all, something throws me for a loop and I feel brand new all over again.

    And I'm not just talking about student issues (last year I had to call CPS over ten times due to cases of sexual and physical abuse as well as neglect) but academic things as well. I really felt like I had everything under control when BAM, new math curriculum!

    Now each math period I'm feeling my way along through the dark, never fully grasping what I'm supposed to do. When I have the energy, I have to read, re-read, read again, ask my grade level chair (who is just as confused) questions about the curriculum and read it again.

    It gets better, but no matter how long you've been teaching, you can feel brand new at any moment. I think you're really seasoned when you face those moments with poise and rationality and not freak out, become overwhelemed or apathedic. (unfortunately I'm not QUITE there yet. LoL)
     

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