New Teaching Job, Any advice?

posted 3 years ago in Career
Post # 3
757 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

Congratulations!!!!!! it is SO hard to get a teaching job these days!!!!!! Be very proud of yourself for this, first and foremost.  I am entering my 6th year in Sept and I PROMISE it does get better! Your 1st year will, in all honesty, comprise of tears, sleeping whenever you have a second, excitement, and a lot of soul-searching.  My 1st year was 28 2nd graders in East Harlem.  I was so fortunate to have an amazing group of kids, considering the area, but learned SO much about myself and about teaching.  What subject will you be teaching? I also reccommend Pinterest for some great ideas!!

Post # 5
757 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

@teacherbee23:  absolutely not worried at all- and I’m in NYC – midtown now, East Harlem previously.  my advice is: tell your friends and family you love them, but will speak to them in about 10 months (kidding, kind of).  Also, stock up on curriculum-oriented FUN things to do with your students- for those moments when not only you – but they – need a break too.  Classroom management is key with the older kids – be friendly but not friends.  Also- remind yourself at moments of doubt that you were chosen for this job and you CAN do it! You will need to remember this when you’re about to quit.  You will want to quit -but dont! Find an ally in a veteran teacher at your school that will hear you out and give you advice.  Although I’m elementary- you can always message me if you need a teacher to vent to!!!!

Post # 6
4043 posts
Honey bee

@teacherbee23:  Set the right tone from the beginning and seek help/advice from peers that have been working at the school for a while. Forge those relationships early on and find someone you can relate and trust. Don’t be discouraged on the rough days and relish even the smallest accomplishments, you will become stronger and more confident over time. 

I don’t teach full-time (I teach middle school Spanish two quarters a year), but I work at a middle school and have seen a lot of first year teachers go through the ringer. The one’s that make it through with their head held high find ways to build their strengths and seek support from others.

Post # 7
61 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

Congrats on the new job! My advice is to act confident even when you are not feeling it (which might happen a lot your first year). Students always seem to be able to tell when teachers are unsure of themselves, and will test them to see what they’ll do. So be confident in yourself and stick to the classroom expectations you set at the beginning of the year!

Post # 8
8282 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2012

Say what you mean and mean what you say. 

Remember YOU are the boss. 

Be FIRM at all times. 

Don’t let their parents treat you like a child. 

DON’T take work home on weekends or you will explode & feel like you never left work. 

Get tips from colleagues when you are feeling unsure of something. 

Be prepared for ANYTHING!

Post # 9
547 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

i just finished my first year and am more than happy to PM you if you feel like you need someone to talk to. 


I teach middle school (history) and took a difficult position because of the climate I stepped into. My kids realyl pushed me, the parents disliked me, staff wasn’t supportive nor happy I was there… I saw my fiance very little and didnt see my family that lives down the street at all during the year. I left the school year wondering what the heck I got myself into, but knowing that this next year would be better and that the kids are just that, kids. They will push, test, and frustrate the heck out of you. But you are giving them something that is irreplaceable and that can never be taken from them…a educaation. Use this summer to your advantage and plan, reach out to any teachers you know to help you, use your resources (hello, internet!), and you will be fine. I used the webite in an emergency,  keep that in mind! I had my laptop crash, loosing all my teaching everything, and it took me two weeks of working like a maniac to catch up. That website saved me!


Post # 11
3699 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

I just finished my 12th year teaching 9th grade English 

– your first year will suck. It just will. It will also,get better

– find a friend. There are a ton of people in your building who will be happy to help you. USE THEM!!! The best teachers borrow/steal/utilize things others have done. You don’t need to create everything yourself. Use the knowledge of other people. 

– when a parent emails you and is bitchy (and they will), ignore it for at least a few hours. your first instinct will be to immediately write back defending yourself. Don’t! Wait, then write back BUT have someone else read it BEFORE sending it. They will catch tone and whatnot that is important. 

– accept that it won’t be perfect. It never will be. Even after 12 years, there are things I add and change every year

-sometimes you just need to survive the day. That’s ok. We all have those days. Have a couple of “back pocket” lessons that you can pull out to fill 20-30 ,invites to give you and the students a break. (One of our geometry teachers has the kids do these cool pattern things with their compasses. I have no idea what they are called, but the kids love the, and she gets a break) 

Post # 12
386 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

@teacherbee23:  Congratulations! Will you be teaching middle school? I am not going to lie, the first year of teaching will probably be tough. You’re learning.. It’s your first time really experiencing everything – the disrespectful students, the unsupportive parents, the lack of discipline from the administration, etc. It is also your first time experiencing the good stuff – the students telling you that you’re their favorite teacher, the parents thanking you for your patience with their kids, the administration recognizing your growth as a teacher. It is very exciting! Just be prepared for the long hours and the overwhelming amount of things you need to get done.

This coming up school year will be my 3rd year teaching high school English. First year can be described as hell while my second year can be described as pretty good. And here I am, I haven’t quit even though it has crossed my mind one too many times. Teaching is great because you can look forward to “starting over” every year.. Even change some things when you get back from Christmas break.. It’s all in how you look at it when it gets rough.

My biggest piece of advice that I learned after 2 years (not even the first time) is that you have to be mean at first and then ease up. If you’re too nice, they’ll walk all over you. If you’re too mean, they won’t respect you. I suggest just finding a happy medium. I’ll still be working on that! Good luck! Us teacher bees will be here to support you!

Post # 13
82 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

I teach the little ones so it’s a bit different, but the biggest pieces of advice I can give:

-Read education books this summer. For your first year, I recommend Teach Like a Champion by Doug Lemov, and I highly recommend The Together Teacher by Maia Heyck-Merlin.

-Whatever happens, pretend to be calm! New teachers always think that raising their voices shows that they mean business. It actually only shows students that they can get under your skin, and you aren’t in control. It also causes them to start tuning out your normal voice. No matter how they test you, be the level-headed, de-escalating, in-control adult. (Fake it til you make it.)

-Don’t beat yourself up. Every teacher had a first year, and almost all of our first years sucked.   Your co-workers will remember the days they cried in the teacher’s lounge, so don’t feel judged. It may take you a while to figure out your particular strengths and what works for you. Give yourself permission to make mistakes and learn as you go just like your students.

PM me for anything!

Post # 14
476 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

Congrats on the positiion!  Teaching high school is difficult, very difficult.  I taught at an urban all girls high school and I had a rough time initially. I  went in like i was the boss and that didn’t work because they all knew each other and I was an outsider.  The most important thing was for me to establish relationships with my students.  I set up my rules, but I let them know interesting facts about myself.  I made sure that I showed my cool and corny sides.  It broke the ice.  I also sponsored after school activities to interact more with them. 

I’d start doing lesson planning now.  Try to gather all of your materials and develop activities.  You want to create some incentives.  I would also allow them to develop the ‘classroom norms’, sounds much cooler than rules.

Just my thoughts…

Post # 15
201 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

@teacherbee23:  You sound just like me.  I just accepted my first teaching job, in high school music.  I absolutely did not want to teach high school (much prefer elementary), but it was what was available, and I’m….terrified, to say the least.  I myself am having a hard time with the stress, planning, nerves, feeling like I don’t “know” everything…

Since I have summer music activities, I’ve kind of started already with contacting parents, students, etc.  What I do is try not to take things personally, and view things from outside my body, if that makes sense, haha.  Parents can be ridiculous.  I try my hardest to reply to that email, close my computer, and “forget” about it (I know it’s hard).  Or, deal with the situation in person, come to a resolution, and file it away.  I had a hard road to eventually getting my teaching job (a myriad of other, “normal” jobs prior, like working in a call center) and I think that’s given me perspective to view it as “just a job” too  I love teaching kids and influencing their lives, but at the end of the day, you are you and need to take care of yourself.  If you don’t take care of yourself, your kiddos will have a hard time learning.

Also, remember:  you can plan and plan, but what’s going to happen is going to happen 🙂

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