It's almost time for school to start back up again (well....it's still going on in Korea).
I am linking up with Pawsitively Teaching to share some words of wisdom with the newbie teachers.
I remember the days with the deer in the headlights look....not really having a clue what you're doing but pretending that you do.
This is my 16th year of teaching, and I have learned some things along the way, that's for sure.
Here are my top 3 tidbits.
Start your year right. Set your expectations high and be strict in your rules and consequences. This will set your tone for the entire year. Some teachers have even said don't let them see you smile until January, but that's just not my personality. I have fun with my students, but they do know that there are rules and consequences. Don't be afraid to let them know who's boss.
Having established rules and consequences in your classroom, have fun with your students! They want to see the "real" side of you, not some stoic person who never has fun. I dance, sing, and act goofy with my students. You spend a lot of time in your classroom. For some of your students, this is the best place to be, even compared to their own homes. If you having fun, then they surely aren't either. Make your classroom the place where your students can't wait to come to.
My last piece of advice....look for the good behaviors in your students instead of focusing on the bad behaviors. If the whole class is loud when lining up, look for the one student who is lining up quietly and notice him. Praise him. Make a BIG deal out of it. Let your drama queen/king come out. Become an actor.
"O. M. G. Look at Marcus. He is standing SO nice and quietly in line. His feet and facing forward. His hands are beside him. I am WAY impressed!" I guarantee you....all the other students will look at Marcus and imitate what he's doing to get the praise too. I was always amazed that this worked.
I also used several different things to reward my students for good behavior.
You can also pass out tickets - I used the cheap roll of tickets from Walmart and had them put their name or number on the back and then drew a couple tickets at the end of every day for a small prize.
You could use "gold" coins where you spray paint lima beans gold.
Or you could use what I created....Star Bucks where each character represents a different dollar amount.
It really doesn't matter which one you use. Just use it consistently and be excited about it when you pass it out.
I hope my little tidbits of wisdom can help you newbie teachers out there. Go link up and see what other veteran teachers have to say!