NQT



Surviving Your NQT Year


Many go into the teaching profession eager and idealistic but can sometimes be crushed by the overwhelmingly busy, stressful and high-pressure first year as an NQT. The truth is that your first year doesn’t have to be as difficult as you imagine, nor as terrifying. Follow our eight tips below to take some pressure off yourself and not only survive in your first year but downright thrive and flourish.


Don't be polite
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It’s a daunting time in your first year, with so much happening every day that can confuse you and leave you stumped. Whenever you’re in doubt, you must ask your mentor, department head or other colleagues in the know. No questions are daft when you are an NQT, and you should feel bold enough to enquire when you need.

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Be ready to get things wrong
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If you let every mistake get you down, then you’re going to have a very difficult time in your first year. Be mentally ready for your inevitable mistakes and missteps. If you are braced for them, then you’ll be able to look at them more positively and constructively instead of letting them get you bogged down.

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Treat all difficulties as learning objectives
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One way of dealing with stress and pressure is to treat every difficult task as a learning opportunity. This works especially well combined with Tip 3 about being mentally prepared for mistakes. Reflect on every task you get, and think about what went right and what you could do better in the future.

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Actively engage with PD opportunities 
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Wherever your placement is, they are very likely to provide you with ample opportunity to participate in professional
development activities. As an NQT, you should be hungry for knowledge and experience, and therefore should take part in as many as you feasibly can. Read more...
It's ok to say no
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You may be the new bod, but you are nobody’s whipping post! It’s possible that there are some duties that veteran teachers like to try to pawn off into the hands of NQTs because it’s “beneath them”, but you should have the confidence to say no to any extra work if it is going to
impact your main duties. Read more...
Test new ideas properly
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When you’re new and keen to start your teaching career with a bang, you can come in with dozens of hot ideas fresh from your previous night’s reading or networking. 

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Dial up your receiver 
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Remember that in your first year as an NQT, you are still learning and, therefore, should have your “receiver” turned well up. Show humility to your more experienced colleagues when they offer advice, and take every suggestion

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Be good to yourself
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As you mull over the tips above, do remember this final and probably most important one of them all. Don’t beat yourself
over mistakes you make, and don’t let yourself get too overburdened. Read more...