It’s true that many new teachers will finish their training in summer. However, with more and more flexible routes available, such as Schools Direct, distance-learning PGCEs and Teach First, there will be plenty of teachers beginning their careers in the new year, or at Easter. For those, we have compiled a little survival guide, focusing on different areas of concern for NQTs:
In the school context:
- Be familiar with key school policies
- If unsure about anything,, never be afraid to ask – sounds obvious, but it’s really important.
In the classroom context:
- Treat pupils as individuals – learn names quickly and try your best to build relationships by getting to know them
- Find out at the very beginning who has SEND or medical needs, and what works best for them – ask your SENCO
- Have the very highest expectations for behaviours and learning from the outset – it sets the tone for the whole term/year.
- Model the behaviour you want to see by being courteous at all times
- Be firm, fair and approachable
- Always remain calm in the face of poor behaviour, and never take it personally (or give any indication that you have taken it personally)
- Always follow the whole-school behaviour policies – it promotes consistency across the school and children like to know where they stand
- Try to respond proportionately to both positive and inappropriate behaviour – over-praising good behaviour and work in certain children can build resentment in those children who are taken for granted because they are ‘always good’.
- Invest in the relationship with your mentor and establish mutual expectations from the outset
- Remember you are not alone – if you experience difficulties, share them with your mentor, colleagues or union representative
- Pursue all CPD opportunities
- Actively listen to pupils and colleagues – it’s a graet tool for learning and improving!
Here at Key Stage Teacher Supply, we love to meet and work with NQTs and experienced teachers alike, as everyone brings something unique to our schools and their students. If you would like more information about supply teaching in Lancashire and Cumbria, call Catherine on 01254 507210. We have branches in Blackburn, Chorley and Lancaster, serving over 300 local schools, nurseries and colleges.