Support is available for both new and experienced teachers in the “I Can Do It!” and “I Have Done It!” trainings taught by CTA staff and trained members. Workshops cover establishing classroom rules and routines; how to have a smoothly flowing classroom; and communication styles: dealing with difficult behaviors and communicating with parents. “I Can Do It!” is a six-hour training for K-12 educators within the first five years of teaching, while “I Have Done It!” is a six-hour training for veteran teachers that addresses advanced classroom management strategies and behavior intervention techniques. Members can get information about CTA trainings from their chapter leaders and primary contact staff.
Here are some of the trainers’ best tips.
TIPS FOR VETERAN TEACHERS
1. Seek out fresh ideas for delivering lessons instead of getting stuck in old routines.
2. Embrace and encourage a collaborative environment with your colleagues. Open your door to other teachers and ask for feedback if they have observed you. Seek out other teachers to visit and observe.
3. Be reflective about your teaching. Analyze your strengths and weaknesses, and make changes if necessary. Teachers need to always be refining their craft.
4. Don’t be afraid of technology. If you are not comfortable with technology, seek training. Use technology in your classroom so students can learn 21st century skills and you can maximize their engagement.
5. Embrace change, and ask for help if you need it.
6. Don’t allow yourself to lose your zest for teaching. Take a moment every day to remind yourself of why you chose to become a teacher.
TIPS FOR NEW TEACHERS
1. When it comes to lesson-planning: Plan, plan, and over-plan. “If you fail to plan, you can plan to fail.”
2. Don’t be afraid to ask your colleagues for help.
3. If something isn’t working, stop, take a deep breath, and try something different.
4. Take time to build a positive relationship with students and their families. Show them you care.
5. Be student-centered; make your decisions based on what’s best for the students.
6. Go slow to go fast. Take some time in the beginning of the year to establish procedures and routines in the classroom. Drill students on these routines again and again. It takes more time in the short run, but in the long run you will maximize instructional minutes and prevent problems.
7. Exhaust your resources. If there’s a reading coach, mentor teacher or person helping with technology support, take advantage of the help they can offer. Parent volunteers can be a resource, too. Sign up for any free workshops or professional development your district or local CTA chapter has to offer.
8. Go on “field trips” to visit other classrooms to observe what other teachers are doing. Invite other teachers — both new and veteran — to observe your instruction and give feedback.
9. Strive for personal balance in your life. Set a time when you will arrive to school and depart from school and stick to that. Cherish personal time with family and friends and don’t compromise your personal life.
Related Tags: Volume 15 Issue 5, Inside Educator, Educator Feature, Educator, Awareness, Classroom management, New Member Center, Professional Development, Protection, Teaching profession, Trainings, Workshops,