This is Teacher Appreciation Week here in the United States. I came across a video of veteran teachers writing letters to themselves in their first year of teaching. Then I thought what advise would I give to myself 14 years ago knowing what I know now?
Well, here is my letter to myself.
I want you to know teaching isn’t easy. It’s always changing, and isn’t an exact science. Your first day of school will be exciting, and nerve-racking. You will have a class full of students who want you to be their teacher. They are looking to you for guidance, and for help. I can tell you that some from that first year will come back to you several years down the road and thank you.
Those butterflies you get in stomach the night before the first day of school. They don’t go away. Fourteen years later you still get them.
I want to tell you a few things to remember as the first year progresses on. Don’t short change yourself. You are a good teacher. Don’t be afraid to ask for help or ideas on the content you are teaching. Never put your self in a box. Use your imagination, and create some lessons that are fun. Students love doing things with their hands.
Don’t worry about the criticisms of students. Many of your students will tell you your class is boring. Don’t take it personally. It happens to everyone. Just use that as a signal to step up for lessons.
Remember, everyday you are in front of a class you are influencing the future. Take everyday serious, but have fun. There is nothing like the first year of teaching. I can tell you it doesn’t get any easier year two, three, or four, but you will still love it.
Just a few last things: Stay organized. Keep track of your resources. Communicate with parents often. Finally, keep learning, and keep your love of teaching. I can guarantee it will be worth it.
Keep up the good work.
Your Future Self