By Sidney Thomas, first published by The Baltimore Times, April 30, 2021
A tweet I saw asking teachers to share one book they would recommend for new teachers jolted me back to my first year of teaching in 2008. My school gave me a copy of The First Days of School: How to Be an Effective Teacher by Harry and Rosemary Wong, told me to read it, and then released me into the classroom to figure out how to be an effective teacher.
The book was my only “support” that year. Whenever I asked for additional help to become a better teacher, I was told to go back to that book. Yet, even after rereading it, I still struggled.
I had issues keeping students engaged, with regular disruptions. I was swamped with lesson planning and grading. I didn’t know how to meaningfully support students who were struggling academically or emotionally.
I didn’t feel like an effective teacher. I felt like a failure. Read more…