6 Things I Wish I Knew Before I Started Teaching Preschool

Posted On March 2,2022

If you’re considering becoming a teacher, you’ve probably done some research on what the job entails. Researching online is great but hearing directly from experienced preschool teachers who have been in your shoes before and can paint a realistic portrait of what to expect is even better. 

Every new teacher hopes to be totally prepared and ready for anything when they first begin teaching preschool, but there will always be surprises when working with young children.

Preschool aged student playing with wooden toys painted in primary colors.

1. Be Prepared for Anything 

Working with young children means excitement and fun, but it also means spills, accidents, and runny noses. Being prepared and organized in your classroom helps keep everyone safe and on task. This means having materials ready for group activities and centers before you start an activity. It also means having safety and sanitation in the forefront, such as ensuring children wash hands upon arrival and before meals, cleaning and sanitizing tables throughout the day, having tissues and hand sanitizer nearby, and keeping harmful cleaning supplies locked up and out of reach of children. 

2. Establish Rules and Routines From the Start 

Classroom management can sometimes be a challenge for new teachers; however, many discipline situations can be prevented by establishing the rules from the beginning and having a consistent routine. Young children thrive on structure and knowing what to expect. Developing consistent transitions from one activity to the next can be helpful in reinforcing the rules and helping you stick to the schedule. 

Get on the Fast track to a rewarding teaching career in early Childhood Education

3. Creative Problem Solving is a Useful Skill

Successfully reaching young kids and helping them learn requires a mix of problem solving and creative thinking. Preschool teachers must know how to adapt lesson plans to simple concepts that preschool aged children are capable of understanding. The ability to think on your feet when implementing learning games and teaching techniques will help keep children engaged throughout the day. 

 4. Patience is a Virtue You Must Possess 

Before committing to becoming a teacher, it’s important to understand that having patience is a must when working with children. Keep in mind, you’re outnumbered by an entire classroom full of them. Preschool aged kids are full of energy and curiosity, so it takes a good deal of patience and a dose of humor to maintain your sanity. 

5. Don’t Forget to Take Care of Yourself 

Teaching preschool can be physically and emotionally draining at times. Inexperienced educators might find themselves surprised by how much standing and walking they do throughout the day, so wearing comfortable, supportive shoes is important in preventing tired, aching feet. Exposure to germs and illness can be hard on new teachers as well, so it’s crucial that you get enough sleep and eat a proper diet to maintain your health. 

6.  Making a Difference is Rewarding

While teaching preschool can be challenging, most teachers can’t imagine doing anything else. The rewards greatly outweigh any negative aspects of the job. Preschool teachers have the unique ability to make a positive difference in the lives of the children and families they work with. 

Is Becoming a Teacher Right for You? 

There are few jobs as honorable and satisfying as playing a role in helping children succeed in life. Chances are you’ve known for a long time you’d be an awesome teacher, so what are you waiting for? You can talk to our admissions team about the steps you’ll need to take. Contact Athena Career Academy today to learn more.