Overwhelmed… excited… stressed… motivated…. confused… these may be some of the hundreds of feelings you are having as a beginning teacher!
It is normal to feel all of this and more!
If you are currently riding the struggle bus – you are not alone. It can be hard to gain clarity on what to do to start feeling more confident and empowered.
We are here to help you feel less of those negative feelings and more positive when it comes to teaching. So here are 3 things you can start today to go from zero to hero as a new teacher:
1. Don’t reinvent the wheel
There are lots of ways to reduce your workload and taking advantage of it doesn’t make you lazy, it makes you SMART! Some examples include:
- Source programs that have already been written for your grade. Use them as a guide and change things up to suit your class as you go along.
- When it comes to cutting and prepping resources, ask students to volunteer to help you! (if you teach a younger grade, there are often students in Year 5 or 6 that would love to help).
- Use a comment bank to help you formulate report comments (find some here).
- Use the same games for literacy or maths rotations and just change up the skills. That you don’t need to be constantly explaining to students what is expected of them. Here is an example:
These games are all the same idea, they are just asking students to work on different skills.
2. Prioritise your to do list
Try looking at your list and ranking the tasks according to importance, relevance, time limitations, and impact on student outcomes. It will help you see where you need to invest your time, to begin with.
Remember not everything on your list has equal importance and even though it may feel like it, not everything HAS to be done either.
You could even start a ‘not right now’ list for all those extra things that you would love to get to but can’t. That way you will remember your ideas but you won’t have unnecessary items sitting on your to do list staring you in the face.
A lot is expected of us as teachers and that can result is a long list of things we need to action or get done. If you want more tips to becoming a pro in managing your teacher to do list, join our free masterclass.
3. Take it one day at a time
Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither was becoming a proficient teacher. Every day you spend in the classroom is another day closer to building a toolbox of skills, ideas and strategies. Teaching is a long game so view your progress with your long-term hat on.
If taking one day at a time means you need a day off to get your head straight, have a rest or even catch up on some marking or sleep – do it! Taking care of your mental health is just as important as taking care of your physical body.
This quote sums it up perfectly:
Bonus Tip: Remember you are changing lives. It is a big job and you are doing great!
So, to summarise, if you are feeling overwhelmed as a beginning teacher:
- Don’t reinvent the wheel by working smarter and not harder
- Prioritise your to do list
- Take one day at a time
- If you need a mental health day – take it!
- Remember teachers MAKE A DIFFERENCE!
Before you go, get your hands on this FREEBIE
We asked our teacher community WHAT DO YOU WISH YOU WERE TOLD AS A NEW TEACHER?, and were flooded with responses.
We took all the wisdom they shared with us and organised the advice into categories, from self-care, to classroom management, to handling workload. We have covered it all!