This is my first year as a 1st Grade teacher. To be honest, I didn’t want to teach first grade. Previously, I taught 3rd grade and K-5 Technology. I was okay teaching primary students when it was just one small section I would be responsible, but I was terrified of having them all day, and being the person responsible for teaching them to read. However, after 5 months, I have to say that I love it! I think I may want to teach first grade forever! (Well, maybe not forever, but definitely for awhile.) As a “new” first grade teacher, I do feel that I have some growing to do, and since it’s the right time of the year for resolutions – here are my teacher resolutions for the year of 2012:
1. Spend more time playing: As a former intermediate teacher, it’s so easy to have an all work and no play attitude. However, I need to remember that my students are only 6 and 7. They need to play, play, play, and so I am going to work harder than ever to incorporate play into my day, including starting my word family file folder games and using chutes and ladders in math.
2. Don’t stress the cutsies: When moving to first grade, you often get the impression that if it’s not cute, the kids won’t buy it. Because of this, I delayed and delayed starting money – I didn’t have any cute coins to use, I didn’t have cute posters ready etc. etc. Finally, one day, I said “Heck with it!” and started money with pictures from the internet and circles with numbers on it on the board. Guess what? My kids loved it and learned just as well. In fact, we don’t officially start money until January, but many of my kids can already make money combinations! So, the lesson I have learned and will focus on this year is that everything doesn’t have to be cute to work with first graders.
3. Stick with Calendar: It’s only 15 minutes a day, but for some reason, getting to Calendar is very hard for my class. (They have a hard time sitting still at any time!) However, when I do get to it, there are SO many math and literacy skills I can build in. (Look for a post on my calendar routine – coming soon.) So, it is one of my resolutions to stick to the calendar and give my kids that quality instruction.
4. Go home at 4:00 every day: There’s always one more thing to do in my classroom, but I find that there are many days when it’s 4:15 or 4:30 and I’m still in my classroom. My personal children get out of school at 4:00 (an hour later than I do) and so it is my resolution to be home every day when they get home. Luckily, I live 2 blocks from my school, so leaving at 4:00 gets me home at the same time as my kids.
Want to read more Teacher Resolutions? Live, Love, Laugh Every Day in Kindergarten is having a linky party just for Teachers Resolutions – go and check it out!
I’d also love to hear your New Year’s Resolutions, so please feel free to post me a comment!