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I'm not sure if I can keep going like this!

Discussion in 'New teachers' started by natalienoodle, Jan 23, 2012.

  1. I'm dealing with incredibly difficult behaviour and I'm not sure I can keep going like this! I battled through my first term hoping that my hard work may pay off. We came back and the first week was lovely. I thought perhaps the kids were now used to me and I could settle down and get on with it. Not so. Last week was an absolute nightmare I had a fiver stolen from my purse and someone put my memory stick in the recycle bin. And I've come back to day to personal insults, fighting and general disruption. I feel like a zoo keeper not a teacher. They just won't stop! I feel like there's something I'm not doing. Like I'm absolutely rubbish and can't teach at all. As far as I'm aware they weren't this bad last year so I can't help but feel it must be me being unable to deal with them. I'm just worried that I'm starting to give up. I'm starting to feel like I don't give a damn about any of them and why should I bother marking their books and spending ages planning when I'm only going to get insults and disruption to thank for it. I just feel incompetent. Like I don't have the right temperament for a teacher. I'm under so much pressure to get progress out of them but how can I when they won't even listen! I'm trying so hard to be positive but I just can't at the moment. I'm starting to dread going in every day. Am I just worrying needlessly? I'm just feeling like I can't do this anymore!
  2. slippeddisc

    slippeddisc New commenter

    I'm sorry you're going through this. I've been there, done it, survived it and got the t shirt.
    What age group are you teaching?
    You need to seek advice from your mentor, deputy or head as they know the children while we can only advise from afar.
    First things first, look at your classroom. Is it ordered? Clean/tidy? Do trays etc have the things inside them that they should, with the correct labels etc on? Are the children sitting with the correct people or are people sitting close to each other clashing? Could the biggest trouble makers be separated by cupboards etc so they can't annoy everyone (including you!). Get this sorted tomorrow.
    Second thing is you need to plan your lessons to the minutest detail so you can deliver it with confidence without any pauses to check planning etc. Pauses mean time for poor behaviour. Have extensions clear in your mind in case they finish. Portray confidence even if you aren't feeling it. Children often sense the uncertainty of NQTs and feed off it so don't be an NQT. Imagine you are someone in your 4th year of teaching. How would they handle the behaviour in front of them. You might not feel like putting in effort but it will quickly pay off. It will be worth it to have better days with your class.
    Talk to the previous class teacher for advice.
    Because if you don't do these things they will be worse because you'll be disorganised. A disorganised teacher is going to get poor behaviour. You are the adult and need to be the role model of someone who will care for them even if they don't care for you.
    Try to get more of them on side (this doesn't mean friends) by asking them to do odd jobs at breaks and lunch where you can chat to them about the things that interest them, their weekends etc. With more on side life will be more bearable.
    Go in tomorrow like a drill sargeant. Accept nothing even if it's something as simple as lining up incorrectly. Show them you mean business from the second they see you. If they don't line up correct stay outside until they do. If they walk in noisily go and line up again and again until they do it correctly. They will start to see you more as the boss. Remember you are the boss. Start the day by reitterating the rules, the rewards and sanctions and say this is a fresh start. Be quick to implement sactions for anything that warrants it this week. They need to see things have changed and you are back in control.
    Good luck. Let me know how you get on.
  3. Hi... sorry it is so horrible. There is great advice on the behaviour forum.
    But my advice is not to worry about amazing engaging lessons - group work etc... it is too much to manage when you don't have much control. You will be casting your pearls before swine as it were...
    Straightforward independent tasks that don't take long to explain. In fact better still - simple instructions on board - materials on desks. Kids who want to work will just start to get on. There will be kids who want to. Get them to read a passage, and answer Qs on it. They aren't going to be the most exciting lessons you give... but once you have more than half working for you the ballance will start to swing in your favour. The power struggle will have shifted in your favour. Give out some praise to your workers. Send notes home saying you are pleased with their attitude. As to the miscreants... keep them back. Don't make major fuss. DON'T chat to them. Just keep them back. be consistent.
    I had one group of serious PE disruptors in upper primary when I was an NQT (covering PPA in their class).. Every time they stepped out of line, I made them sit in the corner and copy out sports rules. It took about a term but eventually got bored with not getting PE while everyone else did. They had to learn some self control for once in their lives; it took some time.
    I really hope it improves for you. Don't give up. It is horrible for most people at some point in NQT. And even the nicest kids love it when you lose it... they like nothing better than seeing the panic in your eyes. So relax. Take a deep breath, and remember you are being paid! And they are there whether they like it or not!

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