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Advice for First Year Teachers

A new school year always brings a wave of emotions as you get to know your students, their learning styles, and your teaching techniques. It’s absolutely true what they say that no day is ever the same as a classroom teacher. I know it can be nerve-wracking starting your teaching career, but I want to help calm some of those nerves by giving you some tips for first year teachers!

Are you a new teacher? I want to help calm some of those nerves going into a new school year by giving you some tips for first year teachers!

I polled the amazing members in my Saddle Up for 2nd Grade Facebook group to share their advice for first year teachers and this is what they came up with!


Don’t try and do everything. Pick one or two things you want to concentrate on and build those. Add in more each year. You can’t expect to know/have/do the same things as a 5, 10, or even 20 year teacher. It takes time and that’s ok.

Look at your to do list at the end of the day. Pick the top 3 things you need to accomplish… do them quickly, then lock up and GO HOME! It will always be there, there will always be more! You deserve to have a “YOU” and time for you outside of school.

Ask. For. Help. And go home!

It will never be done! Give yourself Grace. Have the kids help clean and organize at the end of the day. Take personal days if needed. Find a teacher friend to help you!! Just ask. Be yourself not what u think others want you to be!

Don’t keep your school email on your phone (or turn off notifications and don’t check after contract hours)!

As tempting as it may be don’t worry about being a “Pinterest teacher”. Give yourself grace.

Prioritize your mental health. Taking care of yourself is allowing you to be your best self for your students!

Don’t stay hours after kids leave. Have a life outside of school. 💛

Classroom Management

Procedures, procedures, procedures! Read The First Days of School by Harry Wong. An oldie, but was my lifesaver from my first year to second year teaching. Also, greet your students every day when they walk in with a handshake, high five, or hug. It shows you care, respect, and cherish them!

Build relationships, say what you mean, mean what you say, be consistent and fair.

Set classroom expectations right away and practice them!!!

Love your kids like they’re your kids.

Keep. It. Simple. Don’t try to do ALL the cute things.

Set classroom expectations and practice them all year!!

Working with a Team

Get to know your colleagues and ASK ALL THE QUESTIONS! They are there to help you!!! ❤️

Don’t be afraid to ask for help.

It is NOT a competition, which teacher is better liked by students, who has the best project hanging in the hallway, etc. You are a part of a team building upon their future, you have one year to impress a positive outlook on their education….make those moments count.

Ask for help from colleagues. They’ve all been a first year teacher before!

Other Advice

Avoid the teacher’s lounge if people are talking negatively about anything!

Be open to being confused and wrong. Just like your kids, you’re learning.

Find a nice mentor teacher at your school who’s willing to take you under their wing.

Don’t be afraid or too proud to ask for help.

You don’t have to use everything people give you. Look at it, adjust and make it yours!

As you are tackling this school year, use these tips to fuel you on your good and bad days! Don’t be afraid to ask for help and know that no one is perfect. If you’re looking for more advice be sure to read 10 Tips for First Year Teachers as you head into the new school year.

Don’t forget to also join our amazing community in the Saddle Up for 2nd Grade Facebook Group to help support you on this new journey!

Feel free to pin the image below to save this post for later!

Are you a new teacher? I want to help calm some of those nerves going into a new school year by giving you some tips for first year teachers!


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