Thursday, September 01, 2005

Advice to new teachers

Through Education Wonk's excellent Carnival of Education, Ms. Smlph has posted her list of advice for new teachers. New educators may want to go on over. Even though I do not teach high school anymore, some of the items on the list are things that I still practice as an instruction librarian. For instance, the idea of being visible applies to outreach in general. I make it a point whenever possible to go to all sorts of campus events from plays to exhibitions at the art gallery. This not only makes for some visibility, but I often get to see some excellent productions and works. Being visible is number 7 on her list. The importance of kissing butt comes in at number 3. This was something I learned pretty quick on my first teaching job: it is not the principal who holds the real power in the school. Sure, he may be the head honcho, make your life heck at times, and evaluate you when he deigns to actually visit your classroom. But the real power is held by the janitors, the secretaries, and the master teacher who knows how to work the bureaucracy. So treat these people very well, and they will remember you accordingly. Definitely worth reading.

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