When you first start teaching in a classroom of your very own, it can be overwhelming, and both of us here at Rainbow Sky Creations felt this way too. There is so much to learn… to do… to remember!
“I vividly remember being told a million things each morning and wondering how I was going to store all of that in my brain to action WHILE looking after 30 Year Four students at the same time” -Ashleigh RSC
Hindsight is an amazing thing because it gives us perspective. So let us help you jump a few steps by listing some of the things we wish we knew as early career teachers:
1. It is always okay to ask for help
Perhaps more importantly, accept help when it is offered. No one expects you to know it all straight out of uni or even if you have been teaching for just a few years. Reframe asking for help as an opportunity for learning, not a weakness. Plus, teachers love to help – take advantage of that!
2. Keep things simple
When we are overwhelmed or even excited, it is really easy to overcomplicate things. The simpler your systems and lessons are, the greater likelihood that you and your students will feel successful. Also, try not to get caught up in all the fads you see online; although they can be inspiring and motivating, you can’t do ‘all the things’ all at once.
3. Prioritise your to do list
“I would feel like I was making momentum, but then after each weekly staff meeting, my to-do list would continue to grow with new things to learn and understand.” Alisha RSC
A lot is expected of us as teachers, resulting in a long list of things we need to action or get done. Not everything on your list is created equally – try to rank your to-do list to get what is most important done first.
We like to think about these things when working out what is most important on our teacher to do list:
If you want more help mastering your to do list so you are the most productive version of yourself, check out our free masterclass here.
4. Find a mentor you can trust
We often undervalue the impact a good mentor can have in our lives (especially professionally). A mentor is someone who you can go to for advice, share your wins with, express frustrations to and/or workshop solutions to problems. It doesn’t always have to be someone at your school either; you may have an old supervising teacher from a prac you are still in contact with, a family friend who is a teacher or even a person you can connect with online.
5. Good teachers are life-long learners
The best teachers you will come across in your career will all have one thing in common, they know that they don’t know it all. They are always open to learn and try new things. Education is constantly evolving, so as professionals, we need to do the same. It is also a good way to work on our professional Growth Mindset skills.
6. Self-care is imperative for success
As educators, we are renowned for caring, nurturing and putting others needs before our own. Due to this, it is so important that we take the time to attend to our needs and recharge our emotional, mental and physical battery packs so we are prepared and ready for the challenges life throws our way.
Quote card created by Laura Jane Illustrations x The Teaching Tools
7. Believe in yourself
As early teachers, we wish we believed more in ourselves and our abilities. You will not be new forever, and before you know it, you will be that experienced teacher who is mentoring and helping others.
We hope some of these tips and tricks that we discovered along the way are helpful to you while you are only new to teaching.
One more thing before you go…
Do you wonder how experienced teachers do ‘All the Things?”
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