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Do's and Don'ts of Teaching

Monday, February 23, 2009

I had to make a do's and don'ts of teaching list for student teaching. Please feel free to add to my list.

Do's

* Do take time for yourself and put forth an extra amount of effort for your personal health. Planning meals and exercising can really make a difference, both for your health and your job performance. Your body is a machine and cannot perform if it is full of junk, low on sleep, or out of shape. You will look and feel better in the end, and better be able to provide for your students. (<----- SP!)
* Do be prepared and over-plan versus under-plan (Also, having backup materials ready for unexpected situations can really help.)
* Do rely on others and know when to ask for help (don't try to do everything yourself and be willing to collaborate with others. My mentor teacher only teaches one day a week in one of our classes... but that is ok. The other days she is there to support, yet still has the flexibility to go to IEP team meetings, make modified materials for the boy with autism, help modify assessments for our other IEP teams, pull students for assessments, and act as a human reader during their normal assessments)
* Do get involved and make friends (Being part of the social committee, I've found that it is just as important to be a part of your school's community and a part of your community as a faculty. Silly happy hours and holiday parties might seem like a waste of time now, but really help strengthen friendships and a feeling of being a team.)
* Do be organized (Your life will be crazy enough without having to wonder where you put a certain handout, where your lesson plans are, or where you can find a stapler).
* Do get a rolly cart! We teach in 4 classrooms and 2 trailer classrooms. Having everything with you in a classroom on wheels is a lifesaver! All of my binders, teacher guide books, lesson materials, sentence strips, markers, ziplocks, highlighters, markers, magnet tape, Velcro, hole puncher, stapler, and timer are all right there with me. If you do not have a permanent classroom I would definitely invest in one.
* Do be motivated and demonstrate to everyone that you are willing to go the extra mile and put forth effort.
* Do be professional. Be aware of everything and document everything. Dress and act professionally. Also, watch your backside at all times. No one wants a lawsuit.
* Do always remember why you are a teacher and what qualities good teachers have. Remember discussions on positive reinforcement and how simple things like respecting students can really effect classroom performance. Don't get so caught up in assessments and benchmarks that you forget that there is a sea of children's faces in front of you and this is your opportunity to positively change their lives for the future. Make it count and always be patient. Show your love... you don't know what goes on at home.

Don'ts

* Don't wait for others to ask you to do something. Take the initiative and do it. Even little things like getting more paper plates for the faculty room add up.
* Don't seclude yourself and act like you are better or busier than everyone else. It is ok to step back and breathe every once in a while. Teachers should model how to live life in a healthy way. Workaholicism and being unhappy is not what we want to model for students. No one wins a prize for getting the least amount of sleep.
* Don't put yourself in situations that could have been avoided with better attention to detail, asking for help, good judgment, or documentation. It's a fact-- some people out there are crazy. Don't let them get you caught in a sticky situation.
* Don't underestimate yourself. You are a superb educator. You are certified and are just as qualified to teach as everyone else. If you are co-teaching-- assert yourself. Take suggestions and collaborate, but trust your instincts, be confident, and don't be afraid to offer your thoughts as well.
* Don't be afraid to communicate with parents. You need allies, not enemies. Communication early and often can be your best friend. Relationships don't happen on their own.
* Don't sweat the small stuff and don't dwell over lost opportunities. Everyone makes mistakes-- learn from them and move on. Not every child can be saved and no matter what you do, there will be that one student that still doesn't seem to care and refuses to display all of that knowledge you know is trapped inside. Who knows, maybe all of your good teaching skills will unharden that shell next year and you will never be able to see it. You never know the impact you make as an educator, so don't let it bring you down. Do the best you can and give 100% of yourself, but accept that you are not a superhero and cannot save the entire world.
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SPEECHIED 3/3/2009 9:02PM

    I really liked the list! I should share it with my student intern! I am an SLP in an elementary school. I get the best interns from St. Cloud State University. Can I ask who asked you to do the list? Was it your internship supervisor or someone from your University? Just curious!
take care, Deb :D emoticon

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BELG64 2/23/2009 10:02PM

    Sounds like you got all your bases covered...that is one heck of a list you got there girl! Good luck! You will be a great teacher!

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Getting Back Up

Monday, February 16, 2009

So after my accident i haven't been able to exercise (transportation issues and i was very sore and bruised right after). I went to the gym today for the first time in 3 weeks! I road the bike for 15 minutes and then tried to do a C25k workout. I walked for 5 minutes and then jogged for as long as i could. I ended up being able to jog for 20 minutes and then I walked for an additional 35 mins. That's pretty much equivalent to W5D3. I was expecting to start W8D1 at the end of January, but I don't think that's too bad given how much time I've been off with absolutely no exercising. I am hoping to boost the amount of time I can jog so I'm back to the 28 minute jog that's required in Week 8. My first 5k is in the middle of March and my triathlon is in August. I'm nervous that I won't be ready, but I guess all I can do is my best. If I have to walk then I have to walk. We'll see how it goes. Fortunately I've still been losing weight and am still on track with my food intake, so that's good. There are a lot of factors going on right now with trying to figure out where I'm going to live next year and trying to get a teaching job. I have interviews next week and the week after that. A lot of big life changes are coming around the corner, so it's difficult to squeeze exercising in... but it'll get done. One day at a time and even if the steps are small atleast they are still moving forward.

  


Wow... it's been an interesting few weeks

Saturday, February 14, 2009

So as you may know I was in a car accident at the end of January. My car was totaled and I was banged up pretty bad. However, it could've been worse. I have been bouncing between my apartment and my bf's grandfather's house (which is near my student teaching school) since the accident. It has made things a little difficult in terms of scheduling and I haven't been able to exercise since then. However, I'm still losing weight and watching what I eat. Last weekend was also a rough weekend. My 15 year old cousin with down syndrome got pneumonia and was in the hospital. I flew up to Michigan with my mother, brother, and sister to see her. They weren't sure if she was going to make it. She was on a respirator, but has since been removed from that and is just on oxygen. It's looking better, so that's good... it's just that my schedule has been off. You know? Not being in your house and everything changes things. But overall it's been the best situation given the circumstances. Everyone was very helpful in giving me rides so that i didnt miss student teaching and my bf was wonderful in getting me back on the road. i'm driving again and hopefully will be able to start back with my routine. however, since i've been living up there with him and helping him take care of his grandfather i kind of just want to stay up there. it's starting to feel like my normal routine, you know?? it'd be so weird to sleep at my apartment and only go up there a few days. and their house is very close to my internship, so when i'm up there it saves gas. so i donno. interesting how quickly things change. my first 5k is in march and my triathlon is in august. im very nervous that i wont be ready, but oh well. if i have to stop and walk then whatever. we'll see how things go.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BELG64 2/14/2009 9:19PM

    good for you for losing weight while not having to exercise...some of us are not so lucky...LOL
you better get back to your running so you'll be ready for your race, what day in March is it?
Good luck and hope you had a wonderful Valentine's day.

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Update

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

So everything is going pretty well right now. I'm really enjoying my workout routine and have been able to stick with it.

Here's what I've been doing...
*Everyday- New you bootcamp strength training videos and optional challenges

Sunday- Swim, walk/Jog (Couch to 5k)
Monday- Bike
Tuesday- Swim, walk/jog (C25k)
Wednesday- off
Thursday- Bike, walk/jog (C25k)
Friday- Private swim lessons
Saturday- Bike

Tracking my food and watching what I eat while making healthy decisions has become quite natural and I don't have to think about it as much. Overall, things have been going on the right track. Now i'm just trying to keep the exercising up so I can be ready for my triathlon in August. I'm excited that my ACL hasn't been hurting after I run and swim. For the past few weeks it has been hurting when I run and swim on the same day, but yesterday it was fine. Hopefully that has taken care of itself. So yea... that's basically been it. Just staying on track and enjoying my SP journey:)

  


Exercise Horoscopes--

Saturday, January 17, 2009

I saved this SP Article about your sign and how that effects your exercising preferences. Here's mine....

Libra: September 23 – October 23
Because Libras need balance, you start to feel edgy and anxious when one part of life is taking over. Instead of trying to juggle too much, scale things back to ensure you have plenty of time for both work and fitness. You have the innate ability to look at a complex situation and simplify it—why not share your knowledge with a newbie at the gym who is struggling to figure out how to use the machines? Even though like to have your own way, try to be more patient the next time you’re waiting for a treadmill. Life is too short to get stressed out at the gym! You know the importance of combining strength training with cardio work, but don’t forget to shake things up a bit sometimes by trying new activities. A judo or boxing class might be just enough to kick-start your fitness to the next level.


That is SO funny, because I do get stressed out about things and I have to have control and balance. I have a million lists (i've even made a calendar for the next 5 months that says what exercises i'm doing each day. lol). I can't function without these things. My gym at my apt has been reprograming our keys so I've been without my gym. I HAVE to do W6D3 today of the C25k program. I'm not going to let it stress me out, though. I'm going to go to the main office and see if they can let me in... if not then I'll see if my campus gym is open and do it there. No worries!

  


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