Most educators choose the field of education primarily because they desire to make a difference. But, making a difference can be difficult. Sometimes we just struggle to find our footing. I know my first few years of teaching were a bit like that. But, there were people who helped me learn, and things I learned along the way that made all the difference.
- Take a good look at yourself. Remember that everything that happens in your classroom is ultimately your responsibility. It’s important to realize that “the buck stops” with you. Own it. You’ll begin to see things differently and you’ll be in a place to make positive changes.
- Accountability is important to make change. As you see aspects that need to improve in your teaching style, finding a friend that will help you stay accountable is very important. You should also be able to respect this person and feel confident in being able to ask this person for advice.
- Be motivating! You need to lead by example so be excited about your subject matter! If you need inspiration, look up tips for teaching. Be authoritative but not a dictator – a structured learning system where good habits are developed and fostered is a must. Find a classroom motivation method that works for you and use it!
- Have a clear plan for misbehavior. Be consistent to deal with all misbehavior in the same way. Be prepared that it will happen. Don’t be afraid to call the student’s parents and have the student tell their parent what they’ve done and the consequences involved. Trust me – this works wonders!
- Be respectable and respectful. Treat your students with respect. Call them by name and show them that they are important. You can be respectable by being competent in your field, being professional, dressing and acting that way, and being excited about reaching them.
Don’t try to implement all of these tips at once. Take it one step at a time. Try taking a week to make each tips actionable, then do it over and over to make it a new – good habit. You’ll be making a difference in your student’s lives in no time!