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10 Teacher Do’s and Don’ts

Illustration of school teacher and two students learning together in a classroom
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As a teacher, you are tasked with the responsibility of both giving knowledge and ensuring that students learn. You teach them what they need to know in order to be successful lifelong learners, but you also have to make sure they’re progressing at the right pace for their age group. It’s important not only to always do your job well but also to take care of yourself so that you can lead the class as effectively as possible. Here are 10 things every teacher should do or avoid doing—these dos and don’ts will help keep you on top of all the work that needs to be done in order for students to learn!

1. Do your job as a teacher to the best of your ability

This is by far the most important thing you can do as a teacher. If you aren’t doing your job, students won’t learn and there will be issues. Make sure to always complete all of your required work including but not limited to lesson plans, grading, homework, etc.

2. Do Be yourself around the kids

Your students are going to look up to you and see you as an example of what it means to be in their position. Don’t try too hard or pretend to like something if you don’t; they’ll know better than that! Plus, being who you truly are will make them happy and make it easier for them to trust you with everything.

3. Do take your job seriously

You are an important part of a child’s education and it is very important to the student, their parents, and the school itself that you do your job well. You need to complete all assignments on time and be fair in how you grade tests etc. It’s ok to have some fun but don’t let it get in the way of your teaching.

4. Do make sure you have healthy boundaries with your students

This is something that a lot of young teachers struggle with. You can’t be friends with everyone all the time, especially not in an environment like a classroom. Be friendly but don’t get too close to any student and make sure they know what they can and can’t do or say around you.

5. Don’t be too hard on yourself

As long as you are doing a good job and the kids like you, don’t worry about being perfect. Spend time with your family and friends, school can wait. It’s important to take some time for yourself when it comes to your free time!

6. Don’t spend all your time grading

Grading papers and exams can be very tiring, which is why it’s important to make sure you take breaks so that you don’t get burned out. Set a schedule for when you will grade and stick to it! Plus, it’s not good to work yourself too hard because then the quality of your activities suffers.

7. Don’t compare yourself to other teachers or people from your past

Everyone has different teaching styles; some are more successful than others depending on who they teach and how old they are etc, there’s no need for comparison between yourself and others.

8. Don’t gossip about other teachers or students in front of kids

This is a serious boundary that many teachers don’t think about until it’s too late. Kids will talk to each other and the whole school will know before you know it, so make sure to use discretion when discussing things from work. Don’t discuss anyone behind their backs or complain about them in class; they are more likely than not to hear about it!

9. Don’t try to act like a kid

It sounds kind of silly to say but sometimes teachers act too much like students and not enough like teachers. Make sure that all of your conversations are appropriate for the kids’ age group even when trying to bond with them at lunch or on field trips etc., this is strictly professional!

10. Don’t forget to take care of yourself

It is important to be a healthy person both mentally and physically to properly teach your students. Make sure you eat well, get enough sleep at night, exercise regularly, and talk about how you’re doing with the right people. Your mental health is just as important as your physical one!

It’s important to always do your job well and take care of yourself when it comes to leading a classroom. These teacher dos and don’ts will help you stay on top of all the work that needs to be done in order for students to learn. Take care of yourself, enjoy what you’re doing, and be mindful about how things are going so that you can lead with confidence. What are some other ways teachers can improve their own performance? Which ones have you tried or plan to try out this year? Let us know below!