What instructors wish they’d known

Man, what I didn’t realize way back when. (tim ellis via Flickr)

In light of the discussion over this week’s release of the National Council on Teacher Quality ratings of teacher preparation programs at U.S. colleges and universities, I was interested to catch this topic on this morning’s Daily Circuit:

‘Six things I wish I’d known when I started teaching’

It might reveal a bit about what some teachers don’t know when they come out of teacher-prep programs. And some of this might apply to collegiate-level teaching as well.

You can listen to the audio when it’s posted here a little later on, but for now here are some bits from the lists drafted by three current and former Minnesota teachers:

  • Not everyone is like me – a lot of people don’t like learning or school.
  • It’s all about the authentic relationships you have with the students in your class.
  • Develop a thick skin soon – especially in the age of email.
  • You’re walking in an idealist, strive to stay that way. Do this by getting involved, accepting change and launching your ideas in “beta” mode.
  • Although it may seem like technology has gotten to a slowing pace, it hasn’t.
  • The effect of the internet, specifically as it relates to plagiarism
  • Prioritize the building of reciprocal relationships with all students while understanding that those relationships alone are not enough.
  • Trust students with curriculum. Listen to what students are bringing into the classroom and use that to guide the teaching and learning in your classroom community.
  • Give yourself time to learn.
  • Be humble. Do not think you ever have teaching figured out.

Anything missing — or that doesn’t apply?