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Find A Moment (Total Teacher Transformation Day 1)

This is an article in the Total Teacher Transformation series. Click here for a complete table of contents.

First of all, I want to congratulate you on taking the first step of this journey toward becoming a great teacher! I can’t even begin to describe for you the exciting possibilities that await you as you move through these lessons and begin to come over to the other side. If your experiences are anything like mine as I went through this process five years ago, you will not believe that you used to have classes the way you currently do. If you follow the advice here, I can virtually guarantee you a completely different classroom environment before this month is out.

To get the full effect, you need to really spend an entire day on each of the weekday articles. Each one will have an assignment for you to put into practice in the upcoming school day. If you try to cram two articles into one reading, you may not get the full effect. So be warned.

But first…
I’ve been writing this blog for over two years now. Over the course of that time, I have assembled quite a bit of information and advice on classroom management. As I continue adding articles in the future, this page will serve as a gateway for all of those. So feel free to bookmark this page and check back from time to time. Or if you don’t have time to read all of the articles, you can come back later and catch up some.

Find a moment, and read some of these articles.

Today’s assignment
To get you started and to help establish the habit, I want you to read through some of the articles above. Your assignment is to leave at least one comment. The comment can be either a question, an answer to another reader’s question, a response to something someone else has commented on, or whatever. You can even go to another blog and leave a comment.

If you’re looking for a different blog to go to, check out these 20 Blogs I Wish Were Around When I Started Teaching.

If you are going to make it through this process, you need to start asking questions and looking for answers. You’re going to have to start listening to what other people are telling you, and figuring out what works best for you. So what are you waiting for? Go ye therefore and comment…

Joel Wagner
Joel Wagner (<strong><a href="">@sywtt</a></strong>) 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. <strong><a href="">So You Want To Teach?</a></strong> is the ongoing story of that quest for educational excellence.

10 thoughts on “Find A Moment (Total Teacher Transformation Day 1)

  1. After months of reading tons of your articles I am finally leaving a comment! I just finished student teaching and am now subbing in the same district. I have good days and bad days with classroom management. However, the bad days (or just bad periods) are so out of control I wonder if I really had control in all the other classes or those kids were just being nice. It’s worrisome because although right now I am a sub I am afraid these same out of control classes will pop up when I have a permanent position. Do you have any advice for getting control when you are there for one day and the kids are already turned against you? I feel like I know how to prepare for my permanent position but want to make subbing more enjoyable. Thank you.

    1. Ashley, this is exactly why I started this series. In fact, it’s the whole reason I started this blog two years ago. Thank you so much for your comments and I hope to hear back on how this project is helping you soon!

  2. In our web-site about teaching in the teach for America project we are try to inspire people with stories about becoming a great teacher like yours.

  3. I taught special ed for 5 years and thought that switching to general ed would be less stressful and help me to sleep through the night. I am teaching 3rd grade and have a tough bunch of kids, I know most of it is my fault due to bad classroom management. I started with having the kids tell their parents how they were misbehaving, but somehow the parents kept getting mad at me as if it was my fault. I am going to work more at not raising my voice and waiting quietly for the class to do what is expected. I find myself continually thinking about what I’m going to do differently next year instead of focusing on this year, so thank you for helping me with that!

  4. I’m in my 4th year teching maths at a high school in the uk. I feel like I’m about 7 years behind where I should be!! Thanks for your blog, it is persuading me to think more clearly about what I do.

  5. I am a teaching assistant for a 3rd grade class and I will be going into my second year doing that. I had a tough time with classroom management last year and I am really praying that I conquor it this year. I took the First Days of School online class but, it is a little different for me since it is not my own class. My cooperating teacher is a yeller and undermines my authority at times…any advice on how I should start out in September??

  6. Oh, thank you, kind blogger! This is a great series. Seventh year teaching and it is still hard for me…will definitely be following your series!

  7. I am in my fifth year of teaching. I have been teaching in the UK for one and a half of those years. I am finding it extremely difficult to adapt to teaching in the UK. For the most part this is due to lack of discipline in UK schools and in turn my inability to assert discipline and effective classroom management in my classroom. I have reached the point where I am no longer certain teaching is the career for me. My self belief and confidence in my abilities as a teacher has reached an all time low. I am hoping that this series can help me in my last attempt to reform my flagging teaching career.

  8. I am in my first year as a Special Education teacher. My class is out of control. Kids are yelling at each other. Nobody is focused on their work. I am yelling and screaming and they are talking back and yelling back at me. Everybody is trying to help me out. Some say I need to be more positive, some say I need to be stronger and more strict. I do not know what to do. As a group, they are against me. The situation is very confrontational. I can not stop them going crazy. The kids know it. They are going crazy but they do not care. Some kids even have a lot of fun of it. they want the class go crazy so I can get fired. Please help. I am seriously thinking resignation because I do not think I can turn the classroom around since I can not change the nature of some of the students.

  9. I am in my 7th year of teaching and classroom management still gives me trouble. I have learned that you have to stay consistent and the kids need to know the rules and if they break them, there will be consequence. Also, I have learned that if the kids know the goals for they day they are most likely to work with you and not against you. The battle should be to help them learn, not you vs. them (which is what it becomes so much of the time).

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