Whether you are a first year teacher or an experienced teacher at a new school or on a new team, one thing I think we can all agree on is that anyone in this situation hopes to gain the respect of your colleagues at your new school or team.
- What are the cafeteria procedures?
- What after-school commitments should I know about?
- How do we procure office supplies (staples, tape, etc.)?
- Maybe the better way to look at this is to think about your classroom. Student A and Student B have the same ability, yet Student A frequently comes to your desk to ask questions instead of searching for the answers herself. Student B follows your policy of “ask 3 before me” and checks other sources before coming to you for help. Although they both earn similar academic grades, which one will you rate higher for their work habits?
I know I am not the only person who has had the thought. Have you discovered Kimberly Geswein‘s fonts yet? She made the freebie above. If you ever get tired of answering questions that could be answered with a few key strokes, you might want to hang it up.
When I see this happening, I question why are you asking people question(s) because it takes so much longer? You can do this for yourself and it is QUICKER! Time is one thing that teachers have very little of, why not use the shortest method possible?
New situations like a new school or team can bring out insecure feelings in the most secure person. These feelings can make a teacher act like Student A. When you have those thoughts popping up in your head, it is time to take a deep breath and say, “I’ve got this!” You would not have been hired if your administrator did not think you were completely capable of doing a wonderful job.
- Stop questioning yourself – you are capable
- Go with your instincts
- Focus on one or two things at a time – don’t get overwhelmed
- Write down notes or what you need to research later. I personally love stenographer pads. I purchase several with different colored covers. I color code them by topics like: Lang. Arts, Math, Classroom Management / Behavior, and Team – School. I loved the 2 columns. I wrote what I wanted to research in the left column and took notes about it in the right column. I used a rubber band or a little post-it to quickly find my place. They are small enough to fit in most drawers or small baskets. The pages rarely fall out which is a definite plus.
I hope you find your inner confidence. Remember, you were hired for a reason. Now go out and show your colleagues why you were the best person for the job!