Administrators often assume new teachers come prepared with the foundational skills required to be effective teachers. Not only is this frequently a false assumption, but some of these skills do also not fully make sense until a teacher has responsibility for a classroom. To assist in the transition process, many teachers will attend orientation and be assigned a mentor. However, they will not receive professional development designed to establish the foundational skills of classroom management, direct instruction, classroom assessment and professionalism. These are the bedrock skills necessary for both short and long-term success as a professional educator. Through concise, research-based explanations and practical application activities, this book is designed to fill this void. Whether it is read alone, in concert with a mentor, or as part of a systematic district induction program, teachers that master the content of this text will become effective with their students.
Matthew J. Jennings is a twenty-eight-year veteran of education. He has served as a superintendent, assistant superintendent, director of human resources, director of student services, supervisor of curriculum and instruction, and a classroom teacher. He earned his master’s degree and doctorate in educational administration from Rutgers University.
Chapter ONE: First Rate Guide to Classroom Management
Chapter TWO: First Rate Guide to Direct Instruction
Chapter THREE: First Rate Guide to Assessment
Chapter FOUR: First Rate Guide to Professionalism
Bonus Section: Using this Book for Mentoring
About the author
From First Year to First Rate is a must-read for ALL teachers and administrators. As an educator/administrator for over 24 years. I have been looking for a guide for first-year teachers that goes beyond building student relationships and classroom management. The book is packed with effective instructional strategies, teacher and student rubrics and rating scales that are practical and easy to infuse into daily instruction for teachers and students alike. One of the best books that I have read about hiring and retaining highly effective teachers.
Finally, I have the handbook I have been looking for to kick off my New Teacher Training in the summer and to use as a springboard for growth the rest of the year! Dr. Jennings provides a practical, easy to follow guide on becoming an effective teacher by implementing research-based strategies. It is ideal for new teachers and their mentors, teachers who are struggling and teachers who want to get better! As a principal, I use it to provide specific feedback to my teachers and provide them with a resource to learn more. It has also helped me develop a common language with my staff and establish clear expectations for great instruction!
In his book, From First Year to First Rate:Thriving During the Early Years of a Teaching Career, Dr. Jennings brings together practical guidelines and understandings that help a new teacher maneuver through their initial years in the teaching profession. The content reflects current practice, such as mentorship, and roots it in the tried and true practices of relationship building, communication, and reflection. This is a must read for any new teacher as they work to build their understanding of what it means to be a professional while attending all of the responsibilities that define the job. Dr. Jennings advice is practical, easily applied, and guides a teacher towards mastery of knowledge of what it means to be successful at their job.
I wish I had this book when I began my teaching career. It is practical and has many activities that can be easily implemented in the classroom. I share it with the new teachers in my school and they absolutely love it! It is a must-read.