5 Questions To Ask Before You Teach Each Class

Joel Wagner (@sywtt) began teaching band in 2002. Though he had a lot of information, his classes were out of control. He found himself tired, frustrated, disrespected by students, lonely, and on the brink of quitting. He had had enough. He resigned from his school district right before spring break of his second year and made it his personal mission to learn to be a great teacher. So You Want To Teach? is the ongoing story of that quest for educational excellence.

960692_questionsAs I was going through some old paperwork a couple of weeks ago, I came across the binder that I used with my band three years ago. I remember that was a difficult year because the classes were terribly large. My first period brass class had somewhere around 60 students, and my second period woodwind class had just over 70 students. As you might imagine, this posed a number of classroom management issues from time to time and really had the potential to wear me out. In the very front of that binder, I found a pre-class checklist that I had come up with and was flooded with memories. I think most of these questions will, if applied on a regular basis, help everything we as teachers regardless of class size or subject taught. I present these 5 questions without further commentary.

  1. Will my present attitude promote a positive learning atmosphere?
  2. Are all my thoughts focused on creating an educational experience throughout the class?
  3. Do I exemplify the standards of excellence I expect from my students?
  4. Am I properly prepared to make the best use of time by highlighting the growth of every student?
  5. Have I dismissed my own agenda of personal considerations so that this class will be directed toward serving students in a disciplined format of meaningful learning?

2 Comments on 5 Questions To Ask Before You Teach Each Class

  1. Great questions!

    I'd be really interested in ideas regarding what to do if the answer to one ore more questions is 'no'…

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