How to prepare for your teaching position

Teacher preparation programs are key for producing quality, effective teachers. However, there are some things that a teacher prep program cannot properly prepare you for. Some aspects of teaching can really and truly only be learned in the heart of an actual classroom with you as the teacher at the helm.

Here are my items that no amount of preparation can really prepare you for:

-classroom management
You can learn about classroom management techniques, tips, and tricks, and how to arrange your classroom in college. However, those tips and techniques can only be seen as effective or ineffective once you are in the classroom. Some things work for one class that won’t work for another class or another teacher. It is a lot of trial and error with classroom management.

-faculty meetings/professional development
Nothing can prepare you for the boredom of badly planned and executed faculty meetings and professional development workshops. (You will quickly be able to tell the difference between good and bad meetings/workshops.)

-when tragedy strikes the classroom
Whether it was the 9/11 attacks (almost 12 years ago!), the Newtown shootings, or the death of a parent, no amount of advice can help you prepare for facing those sad and shocked eyes in front of you.

What aspects of teaching can you truly not prepare for? Share your thoughts in the comments.

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One thought on “How to prepare for your teaching position

  1. My first year in the classroom is a prime example that classroom management is not learned with books. I stayed up many night revamping my behavior plan, seating charts, reward system etc. I received my credentials through an alternative certification program and I was wishing I did a semester of student teaching or took time off to substitute.

    That was one of the hardest experience I had as a brand new teacher but a rewarding one. I have taught many classes since then and I can say that every class has it’s own unique characteristics that require a customized CM plan.

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