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The Best Advice #SOL15

25 Mar

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Thanks to Jen’s slice this morning that inspired today’s slice.

Over the years I’ve receive and given my share of teaching advice. But in the first few years of my career, I got the two best pieces of advice all new teachers should know.

The first came from my cohort leader while I was in teacher’s college at Brock University in St. Catharines, Ontario. It was 1987 and she was a retired teacher who had a second career working in the Education program. She was a tyrant in some ways and some of the things she said would probably get her into some hot water now . “Ladies, don’t try out a new hairdo or pair of heels for your interview!” Probably good advice for anyone, not just the ladies.

The important piece of advice she gave us all was this: When you pass a fountain, take a drink. When you pass the restroom, use it. Nowadays, with water bottles becoming a lifestyle, the first piece of her advice is out of date. But the second part is still relevant, especially since everyone carries a water bottle all the time. I still heed her advice.

The second came from Ken Bell, the VP at A.R. Kauffman, the first school I taught at. He told me that, whenever you walk through the halls, you should carry some papers in your hand. People will think you are on a mission and are less likely to interrupt and keep you from doing whatever it is you are on your way to do. I laughed at the time, but he told me to remember it. Clearly, I have because it is true. Try it if you don’t believe me.

Neither of these pieces of advice had any direct impact on the kids I teach, but they allowed me to become a much better teacher.

Randy Ribay

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