Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Teachers should watch what they say in front of students

Everyone has a bad day, including teachers. I have heard many teachers start making excuses in front of their class. Bad idea. You are telling students that you are not prepared and the class might not be much. Instead, be prepared! Even if you think that the class might not go well, it is your duty to make it as best you can.

Avoid any and all statements as to why the class might not go well.

It is your job to give students the best possible lesson you can. They get one chance. Making up for lost class time later will always fail.

Be well prepared in advance. You should never be frantically lesson planning the night before, let alone that morning.

Your classes should already be structured so that you are not talking the whole time. The more you kill yourself in class, the more bad days you will have.

Teachers do not need to complain to their students about lack of materials. Talking about how bad the school and district are should not be done. This also holds for when you are talking to other teachers. Doing so just lowers the bar. You make your students feel as if they are going to get a second rate education. That should never be tolerated, no matter how bad things go.

Always have some emergency lesson plans available, make them easily found and easily implemented.

At the start of each chapter or section, prepare materials in advance that will reinforce the concepts without much effort on your part. Make it to last at least one class period. That way, on a day you don't feel up to par, you can dig some of these out.

Creative teachers can find ways of teaching without the need to constantly stand and talk in front of the class.

Put a high stool at the front of class. Use it as often as you need to. (Avoid sitting behind at your desk.)

If you are sick and can't make it through, or emergencies arise, call in. Again, have emergency sub plans already there.

Sometimes, however, it is better to show up and give your kids a half effort. A half effort on your part is better than a full effort from a sub. We all know that a sub day can very easily be wasted.

But things happen. It is not a crime to have an off day as a teacher if you give students what they need for that day.

Your students will know when you are not feeling well or things did not go as planned. Be determined to show them that you will always do things to the fullest.

Obviously there is a difference in teaching and planning for grade levels. An elementary teacher has different plans all day. Secondary teachers mostly can do one or two. This is where worksheets will come in very handy, so long as they have a clear point to them and something that includes what they are supposed to be learning. Don't make a day of fun, nonacademic worksheets.

It is almost human to talk about bad things that happened and make excuses. A truly professional teacher will avoid that in the classroom.

> Read more about being a creative teacher and lowering your stress.

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