Making Your First Year a Success

Making Your First Year a Success
Making Your First Year a Success: A Classroom Survival Guide for Middle and High School Teachers
by Robert L Wyatt, J. Elaine White
Released January 5th 2016
Format: Hardcover
Pages: 152
ISBN: 9781634503341
Published by Skyhorse Publishing
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Making Your First Year a Success: A Classroom Survival Guide for Middle and High School Teachers is by Robert L. Wyatt III and J. Elaine White, both veteran teachers and professors. Many of their tips will help secondary teachers, particularly suggestions like standing at the door to greet students, displaying student work, and writing a behavioral objective on the board. But because innovations happen so fast, this book is already dated. There is no mention of Common Core Standards, and only five books in the Reference section were written in this century. Many tips don’t go far enough. For example, yes, display student work, but make sure it’s A and B work. Some of the advice sounds like “no-brainers,” such as the section on “Getting to Know Other Staff Members,” with too little emphasis given to the principal, their evaluator.

“Remember that if the student were your child, you would want the best education possible for him.”

The Assertive Discipline method is advocated, but where is Love and Logic or more comprehensive methods of dealing with actions and consequences? Students are divided into three categories—“At Risk,” “The Studious,” and “Popular” students, but in reality they are sometimes mixed. English Language Development (ELD) and Special Education require books of their own. This seems to have been written for the author’s’ education classes, and sounds text-bookish and bland. It also could use illustrations. Still, the authors will help beginning teachers realize some of what they are about to experience.

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