You might have completed your training, but actually stepping into the classroom for the first time as a fully-qualified teacher is a whole new adventure. And it is one that can be quite daunting.
Whether you are nervous, excited, feel like you are walking into the unknown or all three at the same time, here are some top tips to help your transition into your new career go smoothly.
Your new school will be full of teachers and staff members with years of experience. You might find that you will be unsure of how things work at the school and it is okay to ask your colleagues questions!
They have all been in your exact position and understand what it is like to enter an entirely new teaching environment, and so will usually be more than happy to help you.
Celebrate small achievements
When you start a new job, it is very common to make mistakes from day to day. Often, our minds are wired to look at their negative moments a lot more than the positive ones when we are in a new situation.
Remember that your small achievements are more significant than your mistakes, and you should celebrate them. Give yourself a pat on the back for things like teaching your first class, getting through marking and making contributions to staff meetings!
Don’t overextend yourself
Teacher burnout is real. When you try to do as much as possible and when you try to be everything to everyone, you can exhaust yourself and feel anxious about your workday, especially if you are new to the job.
To avoid burnout and to maintain your enjoyment of teaching, being your employment by just doing the responsibilities of your role. When you feel comfortable at the school and have a better idea of how much work you can reasonably handle, start to get involved with projects and activities at your school.
Organisation includes everything from preparing your lesson plans in advance to knowing when your meetings are to making sure you have all of the equipment you need for your classes.
Making plans, noting down everything you need to know and even having a today classroom can make you feel more relaxed about your upcoming work days and also make the work itself more efficient.
Get to know your students
Depending on what age groups you are teaching, you may spend a lot of time with one class of students or teach several classes. Either way, making efforts to get to know and understand your students can help both their educational experience and your confidence in the classroom.
Knowing your students’ personalities, abilities and interests can help you plan lessons in ways which will best benefit their lessons. Students can often tell whether teachers care about them as individuals or not, and if it is clear that you do, they will be more inclined to tune in to what you are saying and therefore the subject matter.
There is no way to sugarcoat it: teaching can be stressful! Due to its people-centric and relationship-driven nature, it is also a job which you can become very emotionally-invested in.
It is important that you find things that help you unwind when you get home after work or something that you can do to recharge in between classes.
Don’t take things personally
Sometimes, things will not go as planned and classes will feel overwhelming. This is normal but still it can be difficult to shake off.
It is important to remember that it is hardly ever personal. If a student is continuously disruptive in a class or an idea you have contributed to a faculty meeting is shot down, try to use these as learning curves rather than taking them to heart.
Move into teaching or build on your pre-existing skills with Notting Hill College’s range of teaching courses.