I thought my second grade teacher was an angel. She had long, sandy blonde hair and a smile for everyone. And she had the best name we had ever heard: Miss Kjoller (pronounced "Keeler"). We knew enough about letters to think, what is that 'j' doing there?
In Miss Kjoller's classroom, language was a mystery and a joy. It could help us discover our past (her name was German, we learned) and introduce new ideas that no one had heard before. She set up a reading corner with books and giant beanbags, and encouraged us to express our ideas in our own journal – a little book of handwriting paper with spaces for illustrations. She connected with us each individually, and made us feel that our thoughts and concerns were important.
Second grade was a stark contrast to first grade, where my teacher was unprepared, overwhelmed, and unhappy. I felt like a burden to her, and I started coming home with stomach aches. On the outside, the two classrooms looked a lot alike, and it may have been the first year for both teachers, but Miss Kjoller made me love school again.
The impact teachers have on our lives is undeniable. It is probably the reason many of us chose it as a career – either because we were inspired by a great teacher or motivated by the idea that if we were in charge, we could do a better job.
As a first and second grader, I was not (and should not have been) aware of the work that went into creating those learning environments, but I could distinctly sense the difference between them. Some early preparation can set the stage for a positive and successful year for you and your students. Here are four suggestions for starting the year off strong:
- Get to know your students before the first day.
Talk to previous teachers, look through yearbooks, and read students' files – especially those with IEPs. Know their struggles, but also give them the opportunity to start fresh. Knowing a little about them will help you feel less nervous, and may give you ideas about ways to engage them. Remember that they will be nervous on the first day too!
- Start early in establishing a relationship with parents.
If they have talked to you once, they will be more likely to share information later that will help you understand and address learning problems. It will also open the door for suggesting activities to promote reading and learning at home.
- Create a system for regular assessment and progress monitoring.
This will help identify weak areas early and give you regular feedback about your methods.
- Establish a relationship with an experienced teacher.
A mentor can answer questions, provide support, and reassure you when you need it!
Questions from First Year Teachers
Reading Rockets solicited questions from people about to embark on their first year of teaching. Below are some of the answers to some of their questions:
I am nervous about the accountability set by No Child Left Behind. What will happen to me if my students do not improve their reading scores enough during the year?
No Child Left Behind requires all public schools to meet adequate yearly progress (AYP). If schools do not meet progress goals two years in a row, they are labeled "in need of improvement." NCLB outlines a sequence of reforms, ending with a complete restructuring of the school after the fifth year. A school can only begin replacing teachers in poorly-performing schools after the fourth year of low performance. Though you will probably not lose your job due to NCLB after your first year, make sure you take opportunities to expand and improve your teaching techniques. This will secure your position as a teacher and your students' success as learners.
The U.S. Department of Education outlines the law and answers frequently asked questions in an easy-to-read manual called No Child Left Behind: A Toolkit for Teachers
There is a set amount of time that should be spent on reading each day, according to my district. Between that and the math time, it leaves less than an hour for science and social studies together. Can I integrate the reading time with other subjects to give my students a well-rounded education?
While students need to understand the mechanics of reading (just like we need to understand how to operate a car before we can drive around), the ultimate goal is to go places! Don't sacrifice content in your reading exercises. Organize reading lessons around themes, so that as students learn to read, they are getting ready to make use of this skill by tapping into a large reserve of knowledge on a variety of topics. Use science and social studies time to expand on the ideas you read about during reading time.
By incorporating different subjects into reading time, you are addressing two important components of a good literacy program, as identified by the National Reading Panel: fluency and comprehension. When children have background knowledge in lots of different areas, they will be able to link what they read to what they know, creating a larger web of understanding about the world around them.
The more you help students make connections within and between subject areas, the more they will get from reading!
What kind of homework can I give my students to help with their reading abilities? I don't want to just give them spelling worksheets.
The best way to use homework as a teaching tool is to assign a task that students can use during the next class period. Incorporate homework into a class activity so that students are practicing a skill independently at home and then putting it to use in the classroom. This way, they will feel their work was worthwhile, and you will be more likely to keep their assignments meaningful.
- Example 1: Vocabulary
Focus vocabulary words around a theme you are discussing in class. Assign each child 5 words and have them look up the definitions for homework. In class, put them into groups to label a diagram, present a report, or describe a process using the words. If each child had slightly different words in his list, they will all need to participate to complete the project.
- Example 2: Spelling
For spelling practice, give students a set of words with the same pattern (e.g. –eet). For homework, have them trace and illustrate each word. In class, play a game where students have to match the beginning sound (f-, b-, sw-, gr-), the common pattern (-eet), and their picture.
- Example 3: Writing
For homework, have students write two lines of a poem, using a recent vocabulary word. In class, have children put their segments together and create a song.
Don't give so much homework that they don't have time to be kids! And remember, work that seems quick and easy to you may take much longer for a child. In a nutshell, keep homework short and meaningful.
For more advice for first year teachers, check the transcript from Education Week's recent chat with teachers Hanne Denney and Jim Burke, Getting Ready for the New School Year: Advice for Teachers:
*Register for free access to two Education Week articles each week.
Teacher is a person in our life who provides many important things together with the good education. A teacher means a lot to his/her students. He/she plays extraordinary roles in our lives from the beginning years of development till we get mature. They mould us and our future accordingly in order to make us a responsible citizen of the country. We have provided below some paragraphs, short essays and long essays on my favourite teacher to help students in completing their essay writing task. All the my favourite teacher essay are written very simply. So, you can select any essay on my favourite teacher according to your need and requirement:
Essay on My Favourite Teacher
My Favourite Teacher Essay 1 (100 words)
My favorite teacher is Rajani mam. She is my class teacher too and takes attendance daily in the morning. She is a strict teacher however very funny and caring in nature. She is very disciplined and punctual. She does her all the works and projects related to the class at right time without getting late. I like her very much as she tries very easy ways to teach us good things. We enjoy her class. She teaches us English subject. She makes us laugh by telling lots of jokes in between when she teaches. She also guides us very well during any school or inter-school competition of dance, sports, academic, etc. She teaches us to share things in class among our colleagues such as lunch or other needed things.
My Favourite Teacher Essay 2 (150 words)
My favourite teacher is my class teacher. Her name is Nisha Gupta. She takes our attendance and teaches us Hindi, Maths and Art subject. She is well educated and taken higher studies from the Banaras Hindu University. She follows very easy and effective teaching strategies to teach us all the subjects. I never miss her class and attend daily. I like the way she teaches us as we do not need to study that subject at home again. We become very clear about the topic she teaches us in the classroom. After clearing the concept of topic, she gives us some exercises in the class and also home work for the home. Next day, she asks questions related to the yesterday topic and then start another topic.
In spite of the subjects, she teaches us good ethics and etiquette also to make us strong by character. May be; she will not be our teacher in next class however; her teachings will always be with us and show us way to difficult situations. She is very caring and loving in nature. She has been the gold medalist in the university she got her higher education. She would always be my best teacher.
My Favourite Teacher Essay 3 (200 words)
Ms. Geeta Goswami is my favourite teacher in the school. I study in class 4th standard and she teaches me EVS (Environmental Studies). She is a good teacher. She cares us a lot and teaches using easy ways. She never takes study very serious and teaches us with entertaining activities. She always comes at right time in the class and never misses her class. We enjoy her class very much as she makes us happy too. She loves me very much as I am her very disciplined and ideal student. I follow her all the orders and do my class work and home work in neat and clean manner daily.
I never become late or absent in her class. She motivates us to always follow right path in the life even we have to face much difficult situations. She tells us that we never become hopeless in difficult situations and search some easy ways to get out of them. She also tells us that never think negative and always think positive as it always happens what we think and do. She describes very well about all the topics of EVS. She wants us to talk in English in her class. She goes to her home with us in the school bus where we enjoy a lot by singing songs and reciting poems in the bus.
My Favourite Teacher Essay 4 (250 words)
My favorite teacher was Mr. Sunil Dutt who taught me English and Maths for 2 years when I was in class 3rd and 4th standard. He was from Varanasi however living in the vicinity of the school. He took his higher studies from the Banaras Hindu University. He was very polite and kind in nature. He knew well about how to handle small children in the class. I still remember him for his unique style of teaching. What he taught to me, I still remember very well as he has made my Maths concepts very clear. Currently I am studying in class 5th standard however still miss him very much. I meet him occasionally whenever I need to solve some tough questions of my Maths subject. He looks very smart with good physique, sparkle eyes and blond hair. I like his good personality and polite nature.
He always smiled when entered to the classroom and first asked to us about our well-being. He also assisted us in the sports whenever our sports teacher was absent. He has smiling face however very strict in the study. He always punished to the students who were with incomplete home works. He is famous for making lots of fun during the class time however students get good marks in his subjects. He is a teacher with good skills of teaching, friendly nature, good sense of humor, patient and easygoing. I am one of the obedient students of him. Sometimes he gave us chocolates on doing well in the class tests and exams. He never gave us lots of assignments at home. He is very enthusiastic and always motivated us for doing our best in the study.
My Favourite Teacher Essay 5 (300 words)
Mrs. Rashmi is my favourite teacher of 6th standard in the school. She teaches us Hindi and Computer subjects in the class. She has very unique personality. She is quite fatty but calm in nature. I always give her a greeting card on the teacher’s day every year. I also wish a good luck on her birthday. She is used to of reciting some jokes in between while taking class in order to make fun and draw our attention towards study. I am not so good in the Hindi subject however do very well in the Computer. She helps me a lot to improve my Hindi language. After taking the class, she always gives some questions to learn and ask for next day.
She takes us to the Computer lab to make us more clear and sure about the Computer. She wants to keep quiet in her class when she teaches. She never leaves her weak students unclear about what she has taught. She makes everyone very clear about any topic and motivates us to ask questions in her class. She never start next topic until we all understand the last one very well. She is very caring and loving in nature as she takes care of all students in the class. No one quarrel or fight in her class. She makes seating rotation of the students on weekly basis so that no one remains weak and unhappy. My all friends like her class and attend daily.
She supports some weak students by giving them over time outside the class. She also helps us to solve the problems other than the study. She promotes us to take part in the sports or other competitions organized in the school. She looks good with her smiling face and supporting nature. She helps us to get prepared for the event celebrations in the school such as Independence Day, Republic Day, Gandhi Jayanti, Teacher’s Day, Mother’s Day, etc. Sometimes, when topics over, she shares with us about her struggle period of the life in order to encourage us towards study. She is very friendly and easygoing teacher. We never fear with her however respect her a lot.
My Favourite Teacher Essay 6 (400 words)
My favorite teacher is my science teacher. Her name is Mrs. Sanjana kausik. She lives near to the school campus. She is the best teacher of school and liked by my all friends as she teaches very well. No one feels boring in her class as she makes some fun also. I like her strategies of teaching in the class. She asks us to go through the topic from home what she will teach in the class next day. She teaches that topic in the class and asks many questions to get clear. She also asks questions about the same topic on next day. In this way, we get very clear about a particular topic. She takes test after teaching two or three topics. She loves the teaching profession and teaches us with enthusiasm and passion.
She is very friendly to us and never makes us fear from her. We ask her any question related to the subject in the class or her cabin without any fear. She watches the activity of each and every student while teaching in the class and punishes the naughty ones. She tells us to concentrate on the study and always follow things what your teacher says in the class if you really want success in the life. She never makes partiality between weak and brilliant students in the class. She supports a lot to her weak students and requests to brilliant students also to help their weak colleagues. She tells us to be passionate about our study and aim of the life.
She is very encouraging teacher, encourages us not only in study however also in the extracurricular activities. She cheers personally to the student doing well in the school whether in academic or sports activities. She gives free tuition to her weak students at her home for one hour. Each student does very well in the science subject both in the class tests and exams. She is also the Vice-Principal of the school. So, she performs her all the responsibilities very well. She takes care of the cleanliness and greenery in the school campus.
She never looks serious as she has a smiling face. She keeps us happy in the school like her own kids. She takes care of all the arrangements in the school during any event celebration or competitions organized in the school. She talks to all the students very politely and knows well to handle any difficult situation of the school.