As the school year was wrapping up last May, I had the opportunity to provide a “first year teacher’s” perspective to some “new teachers” at an Alabama A&M workshop. Some of my own words came back to me this past week. I had said something like “…and after you get your classroom set up, an amazing thing is going to happen: parents from all around your area are going to entrust you with their children. They’re going to fill you classroom with their kids….” And they have; I’ve had 19 of them in my classroom since Thursday. Incredible.I fell into what I understand is a classic teacher trap: I planned the beginning of this year for the students I had at the end of last year. You know what, apparently kids do a lot of growing and learning in the third grade!

I think that next year I’m going to actually start “teaching” on the second day. I know I need one day to get all of the “admin” stuff out of the way; I know I need several days to teach, review, and reinforce my procedures and rules; I know I need to ensure that classroom rolls and beginning-of-the-year transfers have a day or two to settle. Knowing all of that, I know I’m glad I started Reading and Math on Friday…we were getting a little antsy.

It’s a lot easier being a “second year teacher” than it was being a “first year teacher.”

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