If you’re a veteran teacher, you probably remember what it is like to be a newbie: scary, exciting, overwhelming, and all-encompassing. How can you be a resource to the new teachers in your building? Here are a few suggestions:
Make them feel welcome. Early in the year, introduce yourself and let your new colleague know that you’re glad they’re part of your teaching staff. Offer to show them around, or invite them to have lunch together during their first couple of weeks on the job. Get your colleagues in on the welcome committee, too.
Give advice when asked. You’ve likely learned many of the lessons that new teachers have yet to learn. Let them know that you’re happy to share any of your experiences or insights when they need it.
Share your tools for planning. Over time, you’ve probably found a few great online or other resources that help you with planning and being effective as a teacher. Why not share them with new teachers? They can do their own legwork, but sharing great websites and best practices with others ultimately improves student learning and makes your school stronger.
Be willing to show new teachers how you do things. That might be how you organize your room, assess your students’ progress, or engage and build trust with parents. These are areas that new teachers will need to learn on the job, but having access to your expertise could make things much smoother.
There’s plenty of opportunity for you to share what you know, but sometimes what a new teacher needs is a listening ear. Be supportive of new colleagues learning the ropes and acknowledge that the first year of teaching is one of the hardest. Your friendship and encouragement can make a world of difference!