New Teacher Survival Guide Series
Teacher Survival Guide series is produced to help teachers new to the classroom
navigate their first few months on the job.
A teacher’s first year
is often the most challenging. Learning how to manage a classroom, design
lesson plans that work for students, cooperate with faculty and administrators,
and manage the time to perform all of these tasks and more is difficult for
entering teachers. This new teacher guide offers tips for new teachers and
strategies for new teachers to help your first year be successful in seven
Becoming Part of the Faculty Community:
Strategies for New Teachers
Over a teaching career
the aid and support of fellow instructors will not only be invaluable, but
absolutely necessary. New teachers will be sharing ideas, problems, programs,
and students with fellow faculty, so they need to get along as much as possible
and join in with the existing school community.
§ Observe faculty reactions. In some cases the faculty lounge is a
place to let it all out. In other schools it may be more demure. Respond to and
mirror the prevailing attitude.
§ Spend time in the faculty lounge. It’s going to be the best opportunity to
meet fellow faculty until you receive…
§ Out of school invites. Accept out of school invites to socialize
unless an inappropriate place is suggested or it presents a scheduling
conflict. Take early opportunities to socialize with other faculty – or the
invitation might not be repeated later.
§ Find a mentor. Every faculty has at least one mentor to
Avoid the Cliques: Strategies for New
As a new teacher,
avoiding the cliques until you gain your footing is a wise move. Some cliques
are constructive; naturally, math teachers will have a core group and art
teachers another. Other cliques are destructive – the administration supporters
against the administration critics, for example. In no way does a new teacher
want to inadvertently be perceived as an administration critic, especially not
in the first week! Here are a few clique-avoidance strategies for new teachers.
§ Respond to everyone equally. If a certain group or individual invites
you to lunch, go – then be sure to reciprocate by going with another group or
individual later in the week, even if you have to extend the invitation first.
§ Pay attention to dividing lines. Another reason to spend time in the
faculty lounge is to see who gets along and what individuals say about the
administration, programs, policies, and other points of contention.
§ Take personal information with a grain of
salt. One instructor
may think another is a poor instructor, or tell you that another teacher is out
of favor with the administration. See “respond to everyone equally”, and follow
it unless you have a career reason not to.