As my college career continues to fly by and student teaching lurks around the corner, I find myself growing more and more anxious for my first couple years of teaching. In every single education class, we hear “Oh yeah you won’t sleep for the first two years of your career” and “I didn’t feel truly comfortable in the classroom until my third year of teaching.” There are known phases that a first year teacher supposedly goes through:
I’m sure that teaching is not the only job that experiences seasons of varying feelings during one’s first year. I can handle the ups and downs throughout the year. I can handle the sleepless nights and hours of hard work and lesson planning. I can even handle the lack of appreciation and constantly being evaluated for the first couple years.
What I can’t handle is the thought of going into all of this alone. We get one semester of student teaching, so depending on the grade in which we are placed versus the grade we are actually hired to teach, those lesson plans and resources will be available to us. Other than that, as new teachers, it is up to us to seek help from administrators and colleagues. I suppose my greatest fear is not being able to find help and being left alone in a strange new world with such high stakes.
In my panicky state, I often turn to the advice and solace that the internet can offer. There are many articles and blogs about how to survive that first year of teaching. Here are some that I found helpful:
My favorite part about this article is that she brings up little details about daily classroom life that I would have never thought of. For example, the tip about making sure your students are organized is very useful. We tend to forget that kids don’t always know how to keep their work and themselves organized.
The author writes “I am not against modeling, scaffolding or showing. But I have found that often students like a challenge. Instead of showing them the whole process, try telling them the goal, give them a beginning, and let them discover.” I completely agree that we should not constantly be spoon feeding our students, but letting them explore and make their own meaning.
This is just a feel-good video to offer some inspiration for my fellow future teachers. Hang in there, everyone! As long as we try our best and stay true to our ideals of what being a teacher should entail, we will greatly impact the lives of many.