Are you ready for your first evaluation?

It's not meant to be a loaded question. You should prepare yourself for your first observation/evaluation and your mentor, colleagues and association leaders can help you do that. Before you begin any preparation, have a discussion with them on the evaluation process in your building and district.

Follow these evaluation guidelines to make sure your first school year in the district is not your last school year in the district.

  • Make sure you know who your evaluator is. Know what his/her expectations are. Check with other teachers who have had the same evaluator for advice and tips on what to expect.
  • Make sure your lesson plans are in order. Know what format or style is required and write your plans accordingly.
  • Know the curriculum for your grade or subject area. Be sure your lessons correspond to the curriculum.
  • Before you have your first observation session, ask your mentor, colleague or association rep to come in and watch you teach and provide you with feedback. Ask if you can observe one of their classes.
  • If you have the opportunity to choose which of your classes will be observed, choose a class and a lesson that highlights your strengths.
  • If a specific form is used for evaluations, review it carefully so you understand what your evaluator is looking for.
  • During the observation itself, try as best you can to ignore the evaluator. Go on with the lesson, but don't hesitate to handle any problems that might come up.
  • You may want to prepare your students by letting them know that your evaluator will be in their classroom on a particular day but that business will be as usual.