New Teacher in 3rd Grade... HELP PLEASE... - ProTeacher Community


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New Teacher in 3rd Grade... HELP PLEASE...
Old 06-18-2007, 04:28 AM
 
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Hello Everyone,

I am new to this post and love all the wonderful advice that I have read about. I have just graduated school and have been given a position teaching 3rd grade here in Florida. Most of my education has focused on the early primary grades K - 2 not much on older primary. It is amazing because although I feel intellectually prepared I wonder am I really ready for the hands on Maybe it is just first year jitters

I don't actually know where to even begin to prepare for my class. What should I be doing first? Any and all ideas will be very helpful.

Thanks


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First things to do
Old 06-18-2007, 05:52 AM
 
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Okay I was in your shoes a couple of years ago and I walked into a fifth grade classroom in the middle of the year not knowing what to do. You think school has prepared you but you have no idea until you do it. Then last year I moved down to third grade. I love it!! Okay this is what I did..

1. I went and looked at my room to see what I needed to get (find out what books you have, if you have a library, etc.).
2. I looked over my curriculum. (knew it like the back of my hand)(also checked my teachers manuals out for the summer)
3. I started preparing a master schedule for my classroom because we have to have these turned in before summer is over to county office.
4. I thought about how I was going to set up my room..desk, centers, etc.
5. Worked on preparing open house stuff (stuff to give to parents, students, ideas to do at home, etc.
6. Start a beginning of the year folder (anything you think you will need the first week of school such as parent letters, students letters, introduction letter, what you will do the first week of school)

GOOD LUCK AND WELCOME TO PROTEACHER!! THIRD GRADE IS THE BEST!!
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3rd
Old 06-18-2007, 05:57 AM
 
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Congratulations on your new job! 3rd grade is wonderful!

Yes, it's very normal to have first year jitters - it's the excitement, anticipation, etc... The funny thing is...... the kids will be just as nervous (if not more so!) than you. Have you read the picture book First Day Jitters? Too funny - you HAVE to read it. I even read it to my kids on the first day of school.

As far as what to do to get ready. Here are some ideas:

1. Call another 3rd grade teacher and see if you can get together this summer. Think of any questions you have and jot them down for her/him.
2. Go to your state's website and see what you'll be teaching. Print out a copy to keep. I keep mine in a folder so I can refer to it when needed.
3. Call your school and see if you can get a copy of your school's textbooks. Look back at the state framework and see if the textbooks cover what you'll need to teach. That lets you know what extra resources you'll need to use.
4. Ask the school what supplies they already give you (many offer office supplies to teachers) so you know what to buy. Otherwise you'll find yourself spending more money than you need to.
5. Find out when you can get into your classroom to look around and start thinking about how you want to decorate, where to put a classroom library, etc...
6. If you haven't already, hit garage sales and get books for your classroom library. You also may find fun items for your room - like beanbags or pictures.
7. If you're going to have a classroom theme (some do, some don't) start thinking of how you'll tie it all together. I draw mine out on paper so I can get my thoughts together (and because I have a horrible memory!).
8. Plan out your first week in detail. Think about teaching procedures, classroom discipline, etc...

I'm sure other teachers have more ideas, but that gets you started!
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When I first started, I remember
Old 06-18-2007, 08:17 AM
 
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scouring the Internet to see how other 3rd grade teachers set up their rooms. It gave me ideas on where to start. On my website, I have created a list of different websites that I have found useful in the past. My favorite being Mrs. Newingham - she has incredible ideas for third grade. Here is the list of great sites: http://www.nycolescott.com/Teachers.htm

Hope that helps!
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goodluck:)
Old 06-18-2007, 04:07 PM
 
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I was also a new teacher just a few years ago...I got hired 3 weeks after I graduated, and although I was hired a week before I had to report to work, I only had basically 1 day to set up my classroom! (which was a nightmare) i spent the entire day basically removing 5th grade text books and replacing them with my gradelevel text books....

In the new room: hopefully its cleaned out from the other teachers' junk...mine was NOT!!

I also felt overwhelmed in that I was basically handed the materials and that was it...teachers didn't even work together at all. I had no resources and my kids were belowgradelevel...I felt like I didn't know what I was doing the whole year. I spent HOURS/all day on weekends just doing lesson plans......I even stopped socializing for the first 6months of my job, as work just CONSUMED my time and energy...etc. The administrator only walked into my classroom one time the whole year...when a new administrator came, things completely changed, i Felt so Supported...I was considering LEAVING until this administrator came, and I ended up staying because of her welcoming, warm support
******************************* ************
Anyways, I just hope your experience is much better than mine was. Just stay calm and things will work out...Don't be afraid to ask for help or questions. You have to do a lot of asking your first year. Also, I just wanted to say even if it's hard, just hangin there....such as over time I have gotten the lesson planning time down to sometimes just 15 mins! I also over time developed an amazing gradlevelteam partner.....who worked very well with me... I got to know the curriculum well and got good at using my different and trying different teaching strategies...I finally began to gain confidence in myself...i got used to teaching belowgradelevel kids so much my first year that I am amazing at meeting the needs of different students now anyways I am not saying you are going to have a nightmare experience...I am hoping you will have a much more positive experience than me It sounds like you are going to have plenty of time to get your room ready?...thats good! good luck!


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Old 06-21-2007, 12:39 PM
 
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I have taught 1st through 4th grade and currently teach 3rd. I think the very most important thing to do is decide on a few classroom rules 5 or less and a behavioral plan with rewards and consequences. Think it through. If you have an orientation for parents and students before school begins explain what you expect from parents and students. If not send home a letter to parents the first day explaining everything. Of course explain it to students the first day. It is really important, I believe, to come across with confidence to the parents and students. If you can pull that off you will earn their respect from day one. Also be very consistent with students as far as behavior. If they break a rule punish them. If they behave reward them. Being consistent will let the kids know how you want them to behave. I am not sure what kind of kids you will have but in my experience teaching is the easy part. If you dont have behavior problems it is a piece of cake! Good luck and if you want you want to know anything else feel free to email me at khumphrey2201@charter.net. Karen
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Thanks a million
Old 06-22-2007, 04:30 AM
 
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I thank you all very much for the awesome ideas. I have added all of them to my need to do list I have also spent endless hours on this site researching information. I love this place

Keep the ideas coming
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First year
Old 07-19-2007, 12:12 PM
 
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I know exactly how you feel. I have been teaching 38 years, and the principal decided I should go from first to third next year. I knew the first grade curriculum like the back of my hand, but now I'm nervous and my confidence is so low!! The other teacher was moved from middle school to third, so she can't help. I have no problem organizing my room, because I am VERY organized, but the curriculum and procedures for upper primary have me scared to death. (Imagine that after 38 years!) This site, as well as some teachers' sites, have helped me some.

Last edited by Blueyes; 07-19-2007 at 12:15 PM.. Reason: idea left out
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new fifth grade teacher
Old 07-26-2007, 02:28 PM
 
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Hello, I have been enjoying your posts. Congrats on the new third grade position. I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions for an introduction letter to parents for the meet the teacher night.
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What do I need to set up a 3rd grade room
Old 07-19-2008, 10:12 PM
 
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I am a brand new teacher and will start teaching 3rd grade. I just got hired and don't have anything ready to go and school starts in 1 1/2 weeks. I didn't buy much in advance since I was called back for both a 1st and 3rd grade position. I don't want to go out and buy a lot if I don't need it but my teammates aren't available until next week and I want to spend as much time checking out the curriculum that I have yet to see. I am really nervous about starting with so little time to review what I will teach, without anything on the walls or any copies made. Do you have any ideas for the first week, how to set up a room and how to get confident in material I have to teach but have yet to see?
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Website
Old 08-24-2008, 04:31 PM
 
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Indiana teacher,
How did you create your website...I love it! I have been looking to create my own and I saw yours I am very interested to know where you went to create it!
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Overwhelmed!
Old 08-29-2008, 04:07 AM
 
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Hi, I'm also a first year, new 3rd grade teacher. We start Tues and my room is only 85% complete and my systems aren't in place and I'm feeling the crunch now. Congrats on your new positon also...I'm in Michigan maybe we can share ideas? Best wishes this year.
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It's been almost a year...
Old 07-06-2009, 12:13 PM
 
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gadget5,

By the date on your post it's been almost a year. How was it? I have just taken a third grade position right out of college and have very similar concerns to what you had.
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Mrs. Newingham
Old 08-02-2009, 12:55 PM
 
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I did my student teaching with a teacher in Tennessee that is somewhat of a partner with Mrs. Newingham at Scholastic...I have used many of her ideas. I have heard she is great!
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