First Year Teacher Tips

First year teacher tips from veteran teachers

Congratulations! You’ve landed your very first teaching job! It’s such an exciting time. Today I’m sharing with you tons of first year teacher advice from seasoned teachers who have been exactly where you’ve been!

Plus, at the end of this post you’ll find a FREE back to school routines & procedures checklist to help you during your first week of school!

First Year Teacher Tips for Classroom Management

  • Set your standards and routines from day one.
  • Be consistent in classroom management but flexible in teaching.
  • Clearly set your expectations and stay true to them.
  • Classroom community first and foremost… establishing routines & expectations help teaching the curriculum go smoother!
  • Don’t rush into academics. Get to know the kids, establish routines, rules, and procedures!
  • Prepare classroom routines to model immediately & plan where students will keep materials.
  • Have your management plan solid and how you’ll share it with your students. This includes attention getters, positive incentives, consequences.
  • Related post: Individualized behavior charts

First Year Teacher Tips For Lesson Planning & Curriculum

  • Use a curriculum map to guide your thinking. Look back at it frequently so you don’t get off course! Check here for a curriculum organizer!
  • When planning the year, have a rough idea of what you want to accomplish, but be flexible. Things rarely go exactly as planned.
  • Don’t try to tackle everything at once!
  • It’s hard to know what resources you will need, so collect as much as you can but keep it extremely organized or they won’t be of any help.
  • Always have a Plan B, especially when making crafts.
  • No matter how much you plan, something will inevitably go wrong or not work out, and it’s okay!
  • Plans are a guideline… never let them interfere with the importance of teaching in the moment.
  • Start with the big picture (themes, units) and then work down from there.

Tips for Teacher Self-Care

  • Take time for your family & significant other. Your first year is stressful, so try not to carry school home with you.
  • Don’t be afraid to reach out for help if you get overwhelmed!
  • Don’t try to tackle everything at once.
  • Give yourself grace, and leave by 5:00.
  • Don’t buy too many things at the Target Dollar Spot!
  • Keep yourself away from the negativity and enjoy the smiles on the children’s faces.

Tips for Working with Grade Level Teams

  • Your teammates are your greatest assets!
  • Listen, but don’t be afraid to add your ideas to conversations.
  • Be okay with doing your own thing.
  • Buy coffee for your team.

Final Tips for Your First Year

  • Do not hesitate to ask questions no matter how silly you make think they are.
  • Keep it simple. Try not to overthink things!
  • Communicate clearly with families right from the beginning.
  • Don’t expect to have the perfect classroom. It doesn’t exist!
  • Don’t compare yourself to other teachers. You do you. Your ideas are great you’re going to kill it!
  • You will make mistakes, but you will also learn what works and what doesn’t.
  • Ask for help from a mentor.
  • If something doesn’t work as planned, revise and regroup.
  • Plan our your first week completely. Plan for extra time fillers, and keep the kids moving all week.
  • Wait to start small groups until you’ve spent significant time building procedures and relationships.

Want a FREE back to school procedures checklist to help you during your first week/month of school? Click the image below!

Back to school procedures checklist



You might also like

Free holiday math activities

Get 5 math activities including centers, partner games, math crafts, and more for 1st & 2nd grade!