1. Know Your Strengths. Be honest with yourself and know what your strengths might be as a beginning teacher. It might be communicating with people, knowing subject matter, having empathy with the children you are about to teach.
2. Know Your Weaknesses. If you haven’t identified weaknesses before you walk in the door, you’ll soon find them. Work on strategies to minimize the difficulties they will cause you.
3. Get to Know Your Students. Nothing means more to a child than getting to know them individually. Find out their likes, dislikes, family, pets, friends and hobbies. They hold their interests very dearly to them, so get interested!
4. Establishing Routines is Important. One thing that I realized about working in the school, is that routines are a crucial part of teaching. Your students will thrive if they understand that there are routines and a direction to what is happening.
5. Be Reflective and Reach Out . When you look back on your teaching journey of this month, you'll find that you need to share your experiences. Capture these reflections in a journal or with an online diary.
6. Listen and Take Initiative . The first year of teaching should be a listening year- listening to other teachers, listening to other students and listening to parents. It’s a good idea to respond, of course, but it’s crucial that you take in everything. Opinions are best formed as a response to time and a wealth of material.
7. Always be Prepared. Plan out lessons, keep them organized. Have engaging activities prepared for students when they walk into the classroom.
8. Parents Can be a Great Ally. Parents can a great ally, especially if you get an opportunity to understand how parents work with your students at home. Parent teacher meetings, get you an insight into what our students are like away from your classroom, which is vital information to help you connect with the student.
9. Have Fun. Teaching should be fun some days – for some, every day. Your students should give you energy and you should embrace those moments where you know you’ve made a difference- that they have learnt something from you. And they learn from you in terms of what you are saying as well as from who you are.
10. Keep Rules to a Minimum but Enforce Them. Always have clear consequences and never threaten to take a particular action if you are not willing to carry it out. Talk to students as mature young adults.
11. Make Respect Central to Your Classroom Culture. A common expression one hears from students and parents is “You have to give respect to get respect.” "They’re right”. The only way to hold students to high and rigorous expectations is to gain their respect and their acknowledgment that your class will lead to real learning that will benefit them.
12. Keep Calm in All Situations. Calmness allows you to make rational decisions. If a student is confrontational or out of control, it never ever works to react with anger. Getting into a tug-of-war over who has the last word exacerbates the situation. Let the situation cool down and then try to have a mature conversation with those involved.