I think one of the key elements of having a successful and enjoyable NQT year is the quality of positive supportive relationships. I was fortunate to spend my first 5 years in a fantastic school with an amazing staff, who supported each other and genuinely enjoyed each others company. Nowadays, since the development of the internet (yes I’m that old) and the range of networking sites, the opportunities for developing supportive relationships have increased enormously.
My advice to NQTs would be around networking to aid professional development and fulfilment.
1. Listen and learn from your mentor. Invest time in building a positive relationship.
2. Learn from other staff: spend some of your non-contact time observing others teach. You always pick up useful tips and ideas.
3. Don’t be afraid to ask. Keep asking questions of those around you.
4. Spend time visiting other schools and observing teachers in a different context. There is always something to gain from watching someone else teach.
5. Online networking: join Twitter and Staffrm educational communities. Search sites like Pinterest to find different creative ideas.