Top Menu

Experience is the best teacher, that’s why veteran teachers give the best advice. Recently, a Redditor asked veteran teachers, “What are some things that took you years to learn or realize about the teaching profession that could benefit us younger ones?” And advice she received.

Below is the best advice from the thread. All answers can be found here.

Don’t Reinvent the Wheel…

Don’t try to reinvent the wheel when it comes to resources. Plenty of other people have taught your subject before you, and many of them were smart, capable teachers with ideas worth copying. Look online, in resource books, and in your department for existing lesson plans and resources.  – ThatsSantasJam

Make Friends with Non-Teachers…

Secretaries and maintenance are the fountain of knowledge about the school… get to know them and it will pay off big. – glopal

Making friends with the AAs, facilities, IT, and other support staff will pay off a thousand times over. These are the people whose help or lack thereof will make your job easy – or a nightmare.  – majorgeneralpanic

Keep Yourself Healthy and Sane…

Choose the healthiest lunch environment for you – some people eat with colleagues, some people work in their room, some people are always sponsoring a club – figure out the best fit for you mentally and physically.  – dostoyevsky23

Work smarter, not harder. Some teachers seem to be under the impression that if you’re putting in 12+ hours a day, then you must be really doing your best. No, a lot of times it’s better to find a great lesson online that someone’s already done, modify it a bit for your own classroom, and use that.  – mathteacher123

Don’t beat yourself up when something doesn’t go so well, but do try to learn from it so you can do better next time. Keep track of your lesson plans in some kind of planner or calendar, and write brief notes about changes you should make for next year. Use a different color for problems/changes.  – ColorYouClingTo

Be Aware of Your Actions…

When erasing a chalk or white board, move the eraser up and down rather than side to side. Not sure why? Stand up and mime both actions. Consider that your entire class is watching your backside.  – runningstitch

Talk to your students like people. Don’t pull any, “Can I go to the bathroom? I don’t know, can you?” nonsense. If they ask a question (no matter how stupid), it’s because they want to know the answer, not because they’re trying to annoy you.  – buddhafig

Build Relationships with Your Students…

Focus on building positive relationships with students starting on the first day of school… Be at the door every morning to shake their hand and ask them how they’re doing. You may be the only positive adult interaction they have all day.  – schrutebucks

Go to your students’ events, games, concerts as often as possible…it makes a huge difference in the classroom.  – glopal

What advice would you give new teachers? Check out our Teacher Tips Pinterest board for more words of wisdom.

Follow The American Board’s board Teacher Tips on Pinterest. 

About The Author

Rachael is the Online Marketing Specialist for the American Board. She enjoys blogging, social media, and DIY.