Ideas and help for new teachers, those teaching something new, and their mentors

We offer you four basic strategies to get you started:

1. Find and listen to a mentor
Every study of successful beginning (or career- shifting) teachers has shown that having a mentor is often the difference between frustrated isolation and reasonable success. If your district provides a mentor, don’t be afraid to find out how best to reach him/her after hours and on panicky Sunday nights. The listen to what he/she has to say, even if you do not agree with it. Experience is a wise teacher.

If this “official” mentor does not prove willing to help you with questions big and small, take a friendly teaching peer out to dinner after school (teachers love free food) and take along your list of questions. If dinner schedules don’t work, consider meeting very early for breakfast once a month. The early morning slot limits your time, so you will need to use it wisely. Don’t forget to write him/her a thank you note, old-fashioned though it sounds. Teachers rarely receive a thank you. Be sure to tell him/her which ideas that he/she offered were a success. This shows that you were listening and value the input.

2. Use professional organizations to help
TeachersFirst maintains a current list of professional organizations. Bite the bullet and pay the membership fees. It will help you keep and enjoy your new job as you learn and make contacts outside your day-today circles. You can ask questions without concern that they might reflect poorly on you and bring new ideas back to your school, gaining the respect of your colleagues. link to the proforg07 search result page you made

3. Plan a terrific first day
The first day matters 180 times more than the rest. Plan first day activities where you can be comfortable, organized, and under control. Teachersfirst has some first day ideas, as do many of the new teacher resources. You should have the plans memorized so you seem to know exactly what will come next, even when you are only hoping! This is the day to be an academy-award winning actor playing the role of an experienced teacher. What you pretend to be you will become, in your students eyes. (newteach- see below)

4. Use the many resources available to you
TeachersFirst offers these additional, reviewed resources for first year teachers, student teachers, and teachers shifting into new roles. Student teachers should start from these Ten Tips for Student Teachers offered by en experienced teacher-mentor.