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Every experienced teacher was a newly qualified teacher

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September 14, 2017

Every experienced teacher was a newly qualified teacher

Do you agree that few teachers come to the teaching profession, because they have a passion and desire to disseminate knowledge to the younger generation but most of the teachers land up in teaching with no desire or intention to teach. But as time passes, these teachers develop interest and passion for teaching as they see the young minds giving importance to their delivery of subject and seeing the children doing well.

A newly qualified teacher may have lots of doubts and lack of confidence, when s/he enters his/her classroom for the first time. But as the days pass, s/he develops rich experience in skills like-

1. Presentation of subject.
2. Clarification of doubts.
3. Handling a variety of children in class.
4. Interest in subject and students.
5. Correction of notebooks and answer scripts.
6. Knowing the attitude of children.
7. Conduct of parent-teacher meetings.
8. Attending field trips with children.
9. Organising school events and many more tasks.

Here are a few things, on which newly qualified teachers can focus in the early days that might help you find your feet-

1. Get useful information about the school. This can be done by visiting the school or going through the website of the school. Get anything that you think might come in handy and spend some time perusing it so you know the right kinds of questions to ask before you start to teach. Know the school policies and schemes of work from the HR officials and Head of the department. This information is relevant for it will affect the way you work from the first day.

2. Ensure that your lesson plans are well prepared – this will give you confidence. Preparation for the class and teaching materials well in advance will lead to qualitative teaching in the class with free flow of concepts and good time management. Preparing for lessons is a must for every teacher whether new or experienced as it results in productive teaching-learning process.

3. Most of the schools have mentors or HODs who give guidance to new teachers in the procedures they follow in the school. Interaction with them, learning and clarification of doubts will give good training and quick learning so that the new teacher follows the path of the school system. At the same time you have to find time to take guidance from more than one mentor. Teachers who belong to the same department – learn from them and also observe their classroom lessons. In your free periods, take permission to sit in their classes and observe their teaching-learning processes to apply them in your classes for quality teaching and a better performance.

4. Learning the discipline strategies is equally important for a newly qualified teacher. He or she has to know the measures to be taken in a classroom to correct the children’s behavior which are acceptable to the child as well as the school. Knowing the range of sanctions available to you is important for your own confidence, as well as for managing the behavior of your new class.

5. You can plan your subject delivery involving introduction, well planned activities, active participation of students, black-board work, summarization, assignment, which are a must in every class. But at the same time each class is different and in each class you have varied children with different learning abilities and interests. Hence, to involve all the children in learning, your teaching plan should have interesting activities like usage of ICT, lab activities or hands on activities, correlating the subjects to daily life like sports, food, television etc., adding humour to sustain the attention and interest of the child in the classroom along with effective teaching aids.

6. One more important job of the teachers is to be a good mediator between the child and parent. It is part of a teacher’s profession to say what is necessary, however hard this may seem. Parents may seek your advice, press you for information, confront you, perhaps even cry on your shoulder; so be prepared. Even experienced teachers often find working with parents a complex task. Make notes that are specific and accurate about every child to jog your memory during Parent Teacher Meetings. Do not compare children in front of parents. Be specific and focus on the behaviour and academic performance of the child. Be calm and listen with patience to an upset parent and after he or she completes, slowly explain your view. Showing patience regarding every child in the class gives happiness to parents.

7. Do not pile up your work, but prioritize your work for smooth functioning. Maintaining registers, being punctual in corrections, preparing question papers and declaring results, maintaining anecdotal records of your class children, holding additional responsibilities with commitment, giving moral support to children are a few vital functions of teachers. Knowledge of computers is a must these days in the teaching profession, as it is needed to prepare activity sheets, question papers, ICT as a teaching aid in classes, to communicate with parents and school authorities through email, etc.

8. Attending workshops or teacher training programmes is definitely a good exposure for new learning. Whether old or new teachers workshops promote growth. One should always try to look for developmental opportunities.

9. You need to have a healthy relationship with students. Teachers must remember that students need encouragement and reassurance. Appreciation for good work, being punctual, achieving high scores, active class room participation, etc motivates the students to achieve their highest potential.

10. When designing assessment tasks for pupils, work out in advance the marking scheme you will use to assess their work and give them clear pointers about what will gain them marks. If pupils know about how assessment works, they produce better standard of work. After a test, it is always good to explain the marking scheme of the paper to not only clarify doubts but also give the expected answers to students. Tracking the performance of children, finding reasons for low scores, appreciation and encouragement for good performance, suggesting right guidelines will help the students to perform well in academics.

11. In the teaching profession, one of the greatest rewards is having former students who tell their teachers how much they had inspired and influenced their lives. Effective teachers inspire students and act as role models just as good leaders inspire their followers. A teacher should build and strengthen culture, values, beliefs of society and guide the students. As a leader, the teacher can communicate values and expectations by acting as a role model – showing loyalty, self-sacrifice and service to the students beyond the call of duty.

12. We communicate our personal feelings, emotions, attitudes etc. through body language without using any words. Body language includes gestures, postures, facial expressions and appearance. Face is a prominent part of our body for sending non-linguistic symbols. Hence, teachers need to be careful with their facial expression, gestures, body posture, eye contact, personal appearance etc. in every class because in every class many tiny eyes are observing you, learning from you and evaluating you.

‘Man errs as long as he doth strive.’ Goethe, the great German poet, knew that more than 200 years ago. His words still ring true today, but with a crucial difference: Striving alone is not enough. You have to strive faster than the rest. Stop waiting for perfection and learn from your mistakes.

Surekha nayani, (chemistry),b. ed has fifteen years of teaching experience in cbse schools and has been teaching physics and chemistry to secondary school students. presently, she is working as head of the department of science and also as cbse co-ordinator in delhi public school, nacharam, hyderabad. as hod she trains teachers in teachinglearning processes like developing and presentation of content, preparation of worksheets and question papers, designing cce etc. and also conducts workshops on various aspects of teaching science. she has written articles on teaching science by focusing on creative methodologies which arouse interest in the subject. she strongly believes that every teacher should emphasise proper planning, preparation and effective presentation of subject matter, every day and in every class with commitment which influences and empowers student learning.

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