1. Be weird, be different, be funny and be memorable because it's a proven scientific fact that kids remember memorable things more than unmemorable ones. I'm sure my kids will always remember me creating giant fireballs using methane bubbles to demonstrate combustion while few may remember my awe inspiring talk on cellular organelles.
2. Push through the politics, bureaucracy and other crap we deal with as teachers every day. You are a teacher, you are there for the students so don't let the powers that be get you down. You know what you're doing, you know what works and what doesn't. Be your own person and teach because you love it.
3. Don't take things personally. This includes underachieving and poor behaving students. Regarding those who underachieve, don't feel like a failure, learning goes both ways. You can only present the material the best way you know how, it's also up to the students to do their part. If you've done everything you can, provided every opportunity to help and still your student fails, don't take it personally because you can't force someone to learn. Secondly, poor behaviour can sometimes be attributed to an outside factor like a difficult home life, being bullied, peer pressure or maybe the kid is just having a bad day. Consider these things carefully before you take something to personally.
4. Continually innovate, stay updated, mix things up and always try to think of how you can improve. This can mean coming up with a new and exciting method of teaching/assessing and/or keeping up on the happenings in your field. If you're still teaching that humans contain 40 chromosomes or that the U.S.S.R. is the greatest threat to world peace, you need to do some research. Also, try some new technologies in your classroom like iPad's or perhaps give the flipped classroom a chance. For some fun innovative freebies, please see below.
5. Love what you do. You have the most amazing job in the world. You get to educate young minds and shape who they are to be. I've met some incredible kids during my career and they've told me I've made a difference in their lives. Keep that in mind when you're wading through the choppy and uncertain waters at school or struggling to get that first teaching job. 6. To take a phrase from the TV show How I Met Your Mother, "BE AWESOME" because excitement is contagious. Learning can be fun but it's your job to make it so. Make passionate learners out of your students and teach them that school isn't about learning thousands of useless facts they will never use, it's about discovery, innovation and creativity and hopefully, learning something new and amazing. Thank you for reading my post. I love Task Cards and as a means of fulfilling number 4 above, I love to innovate. VOLA, I came up with my Task Card Activity sets which take task cards to a different level. I've included a list of my Task Card Activity resources below.
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FREEBIE ALERT!! Head over to my blog - teachwithfergy.com and send me a message via the contact form requesting one of the Task Card Resources below and I'll send it to you.
Space - The Study of the Universe
Biology: Cells and Body Systems
Chemistry - Atoms, Compound Naming and Chemical Reactions
Ecology and Ecosystems
Electricity - Current and Static
Forces and Motion
High School Mathematics:
Polynomials - Binomials and Trinomials
System of Linear Equations
Measurement of 3D Objects
Solving Quadratic Equations Solving
Area and Perimeter of Polygons Word Problems
Converting between Decimals, Fractions and Percentages
Decimals - Four Basic Operations
Multiplication and Division Word Problems