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First Day of Class Ever

So, Sunday was my very first day of teaching! I was not nervous – actually maybe a bit, but the students made it easier for me. I was relaxed and very excited towards the end of class, that I took the whole 2h and 45 min of teaching.  I wish I knew that students make it easier for the lecturer to lecture about something. Plus if you encourage them to participate, they have a lot to contribute to a certain topic, I didn’t know that either – although I’m still a student myself getting my Ph.D. Just keep the students engaged, and teach them something new, and the class would end on a good note. I told them that we are a team and we learn together. and they understood that perfectly and the whole class was participating with me. I loved it!

 

I loved my first experience. Looking forward for my future classes.

 

 

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5 comments to First Day of Class Ever

  • I am so glad that your first day was so positive. When I started my biggest concern was if I made a mistake about a piece of information. Over the years I have finally realized that I have been in my field for 35 years and that I have a huge amount of information to convey to the students and just to enjoy it and not to worry.

  • It’s amazing how powerful first impressions are to students, isn’t it? Scary! Sounds like you made a good one, though. I find that students respond so powerfully to humanness – teachers who place themselves as equals to their students and who aren’t afraid to say “I don’t know – my guess is …, but we would have to double check that.”
    Glad it went so well!

  • Congrats on the first day! It sounds like you have a very approachable teaching style and also a very positive attitude; you’ll do great!

  • Congratulations on your first day teaching. After reading your post I recalled an experience I had when I first started teaching. Long before the internet, I was observed by the building principal teaching a high school social studies special education class. This was my first semester teaching and it was my first observation. Needless to say I was nervous. A student asked me a question, which I thought I knew the answer, but was not sure that I was correct. There were no texts to refer in the classroom, I moved from room to room each period.

    Rather than give the student the answer off the cuff, I told the class that I needed to check it in the school library and would do so fifth period, before eating lunch. Two students volunteered to meet me there, which they did. For one of them, it was the first time walking into the school library even though it was their second year in the building. I told the class the next day that learning does not end when you get your degree and I fully intended to learn from them and with them.

    Several days later, at the post observation meeting, the principal said he was surprised that I admitted that I did not know the answer, but complemented me on the way that I handled it.

  • Nicole Lorenzetti

    This is so great to hear, Theresa! The first day ever in a college classroom is beyond nerve-racking–I remember distinctly feeling as though no one would believe a word I say. I have found, though, that creating an environment where students are respected by both me and by their peers allows discussion to flow and participation to be a vital part of your classroom. Cheers!

    I also completely understand your initial fear of passing on wrong information, Jeanette. I have come to realize that it is all right to not know the answer sometimes; I throw the question back out to students (which research has shown creates strong learners anyway!) or I say, “I am not entirely sure of the answer–I will do some digging this week and get back to you.” I agree with you that we as educators have a wealth of information to share, and that focusing on that positive aspect allows us to sometimes take a step back and model for our students how to seek out answers we don’t initially know. Which is exactly what you did, Carol, and I admire your skill in handling the situation.

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