Do you remember your first day teaching? Feelings of excitement, fear, confusion, exhilaration ---rolling over you like huge waves in an unexplored ocean. Well, SoulPancake, an interactive website with the tagline, ”Chew on life’s big questions” has taken it viral. In honor of teacher appreciation week, they posted a video on YouTube called. “If I Knew Then: A Letter to Me on My First Day Teaching” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=miPYLJI247g Soul Pancake wants to take you back to that day and asks, Knowing what you do now, what would you write in a letter to yourself on your first day teaching? What advice would you give yourself?
SWBOCES Librarians at the Welcome Back Social last Thursday did just that and gave me permission to share excerpts from their letters below. After your read them and perhaps watch the SoulPancake video, share your advice to yourself on your first day of teaching with your colleagues in the comments section below.
There will be many challenges your first year…but there will be great days, like when you see students conducting storytime to their classmates. It gets better!”
Always remember to be loving but firm. Never give up no matter what.”
Hang in there, it gets easier! Teaching is hard but its’ very satisfying. There is nothing to compare to the feeling you get when you see that look on a child’s face that means “I get it!” Or to be stopped in the hall by a child who is eager to tell you how much he/she enjoyed a book! There is help available when times get tough, find a mentor – and know that people are eager to support you.”
You don’t have to do everything at once; pace yourself. And remember, getting kids to be quiet and line up is like nailing jello to the wall; it defies the laws of nature.”
Remember to 'Go to their planet.'"
Maintain consistency and always keep in mind that what you are doing is for kids. Always stay positive and remember all kids CAN learn, you just have to find their niche.”
Today is an exciting day in teaching. You will make a difference in many children’s life. You will affect change. The world is a beautiful place."