Three posts in three days, I am getting much better at staying on track! Thanks to all my loyal readers who have put up with my absence. You would think over the holidays you have more time, but perhaps we just waste more time....
Today, I'm linking up with Lauren at Love, Laughter and Learning in Prep for her 10 Top Tips for New Teachers. This year I am teaching with a Graduate Teacher, so this is a perfect time to reflect on what I have been discussing with her! If you are a beginning teacher, head on over to Lauren's blog to read what others have had to say.
Get yourself organised at the start of the year so you have everything you need done ahead of time. Little things like labelling books, getting out resources ahead of time, knowing where things are in the school, can save you a lot of time in the long run.
Top Tip for Behavioural Management
If you are going to have classroom rules, develop them with the children. They need to take ownership of the rules so they are accountable. Have each child sign around the outside of the rules (or underneath) so they all commit to it. Reward the positive behaviours instead of punishing negative behaviours wherever possible.
Top Tip for Being a Team Player
In your first year of teaching, many teachers may help you by giving you lots of great ideas. But remember to have a little look online yourself - there are some great resources out there, especially on websites like Teachers Pay Teachers, Teachers Notebook and Teachers Marketplace. There is also Enchanted Learning and DLTK for younger children. Don't be afraid to offer suggestions - it takes give and take!
Top Tip for Time Management
Be organised. Know what you are going to do in your day, how long things will take and make every single minute purposeful with your class. You are going to waste time if you don't have all your resources there, ready to go! Where possible, correct on the go, so you don't have a pile of books left for you to correct at the end of the day.
Top Tip for Engaging Students
Variety, excitement and enthusiasm. I have always said that in the classroom I could make the most boring task exciting, just by using an exciting voice. Try it - hide the task inside the activity if you can. For example, you might tell this huge story first and then have children complete a task from the story, is that more engaging than saying "Today we are going to do this...." - YES it is! Mix things up occasionally too - it doesn't mean you change your whole room around - just change a task, or the way it is done.
Top Tip for Getting Along with Parents
Be welcoming towards parents (a simple hello and goodbye can do it), aim to learn their names as quickly as possible, contact them for BOTH positive and negative issues and always listen. LISTEN, listen, listen to the parents and if you are challenged by what they are saying, ask a colleague to help or pop in to help answer their questions.
Top Tip for Teacher Fashion
This tip is curtsey of my Mum, a teacher for many, many years. She said she always rotated her shoes. I know it sounds basic, but I do have some favourites, especially in summer, but after wearing the same pair of shoes all week, your feet can hurt. So mix it up - this idea really just gives you an excuse to buy more shoes!
Top Tip for Bargain Hunting
I've discovered Op Shops or Goodwill for games, puzzles and basic furniture for my classroom this year. It is amazing what people will give to Goodwill, definitely things classrooms require!
Top Tip for Eating Well at School
I always pack salads the night before (or make a big pot of soup at the start of the week) so my lunches are ready to go. I am also keeping some vita wheat crackers and some cans of tuna in my desk this year, for those just in case times...
Top Tip for Staying Sane
Go for a walk, chat with friends, watch some TV or play on the internet - anything to give you a little rest everyday! Also make one day a school free day, mine is usually Saturday!
Head on over to see some more tips at Love, Laughter and Learning in Prep!