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Financial Guidance For New Teachers

Beginning teachers get hired, often late, and arrive a week before school starts for the year to set up their classrooms and prepare for students.

Everything is new. So many thoughts are running around in your head. The questions are unending. What am I supposed to teach? How will my students be tested? What will their test scores say about me as a teacher? What does the principal expect?

So, how can you find out what your students really know, deal with their diverse learning needs, and ensure that everyone is learning?

Learn and Grow!

You need to learn situationally relevant approaches to your subject matter. Learn to teach subject matter in a way that students are going to get it. Not necessarily the way the teacher’s manual says to do it.

  • New teachers need to learn how to think on their feet, size up situations and decide what to do, study the effects of their practice, and use what they learn to inform their planning and teaching.
  • New teachers have to learn to teach in a particular context.
  • New teachers need three or four years to achieve competence and several more to reach proficiency. A high-quality induction program should increase the probability that new teachers learn desirable lessons from their early teaching experiences.

New teachers long for opportunities to learn from their experienced colleagues and want more than social support and instructions for using the copying machine. 

  • New teachers should discuss curriculum implementation, get ideas about how to address specific students’ needs and gain insight from colleagues with experience in their subject areas.
financial guidance for new teachers

The Importance of a Good Mentoring

If we leave beginning teachers to sink or swim on their own, they may become overwhelmed and leave the field. Alternatively, they may stay, clinging to practices and attitudes that help them survive but do not serve the education needs of students.

Mentors often offer help only if the new teacher asks. When learning to teach is the goal, mentors become teachers of teaching, not buddies or local guides.

  • Mentoring is an unnatural activity for teachers. Good classroom teachers are effective because they can pull off a seamless performance, monitor student understanding, and engage students in important ideas.
  • However, good classroom teachers may not know how to make their thinking visible, explain the principles behind their practice, or break down complex teaching moves into components understandable to a beginner. Nor do they necessarily know how to design an individualized curriculum for learning to teach that is tailored to the specific strengths and vulnerabilities of a particular novice in a specific context.
  • Strong induction programs offer mentors more than a few days of initial training. They provide ongoing opportunities for study and problem solving as mentors carry out their work with new teachers.
  • Mentor teachers need opportunities to clarify their vision of good teaching, see and analyze effective mentoring models, and develop skills in observing and discussing teaching in analytic, nonjudgmental ways.

Useful Tips to Have in the Back as a New Teacher

Teaching is a fairy tale. There are magical creatures, witches, and wizards, and morals to be learned.

Here are things you need to know as you begin your teaching adventure to prevent you from traveling down different paths and trying to figure out the moral of the story.

Don’t Feel the Need to Do It All.

  • Choose a few things you want to focus on, set goals, and work towards these. Over time, it will get easier but know that there will always be something to do. The list is endless: teaching, differentiation, assessments, playground duty, PLCs, staff meetings, homework, planning excursions, changing displays, and sharpening pencils.

Dare to make Mistakes.

  • Through mistakes, you learn, improve, and discover your preferences as a teacher. And that is okay! Don´t hesitate to do things, even if you are afraid you might fail. Don´t hold back; allow yourself to try something new.

The 4 Pillars of Teacher Health

  • Water, sleep, movement, and nutrition are key! Prioritize these things because these are simple, important, and effective things for maintaining energy, being able to make it through the day, staying focused, and getting things done.

Laugh and Be Heartful

  • Laughter is a great tool to use to connect with your students. Nothing is so serious that a good laugh can’t fix it! This is really a mood booster, makes things feel lighter and can mean the difference between getting annoyed or moving on.

Connection means Learning

  • Learn to know your students as people, finding out their interests and a bit about where they come from. Then, you can begin to organize and tailor content to meet their needs so learning can happen easily and much more effectively. Think of making this happen before the things in the curriculum!

Ask for Help All over Again and Again

  • Asking for help means you can take advice, recognize areas you need to develop, and work with colleagues. Asking for help is a sign of strength, not weakness! This is a great way to develop your skillset as a teacher. Do not struggle all alone; teachers are great at helping each other. Just ask them.

Please be Kind to Your Self

  • Teaching is special. It is demanding, stressful, and rewarding all at once. Some days, you will feel like you have it all together, and other days, you will have no idea what you are doing. So, welcome to teaching!

It definitely does get easier! But there will always be something to do, something to improve, and something that needs your attention. Be kind to yourself; you are doing the best you can!

bill wallace author teacher retirement plans

About Author

Bill Wallace blends his academic background in Literature with his ventures in International Business and finance. His professional journey took him across Europe, especially in Spain, where his passion for writing evolved. Since then, armed with his literary finesse and investment acumen, he has been crafting financial content for teachers worldwide. More about me.

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