The First Year Matters was written to be a companion to Mentoring in Action , also by Carol Pelletier. Organized in the same month-by-month format, The First Year Matters organizes the first hectic year of teaching so that new teachers and student teachers can have a ready reference for their thoughts and journal entries. It also provides topics of discussion for meeting with their mentor, activities for discussion, and goal setting for the coming month. For teachers who are required to maintain a district or state portfolio for licensing, this guide can be used to demonstrate what they have been doing each month.
The first year of teaching is an overwhelming experience. Many new teachers are so busy that they overlook some of the basic skills of teaching. Working with a teacher mentor can aid new teachers in having a sounding board for questions and someone with whom to share the experience. Mentors are important to the success of the beginning teacher and to their continued success in the teaching profession. Often new teachers get discouraged in their first year and give up on teaching. This book is designed to help them through the crucial first year so they will stay in this wonderfully rewarding profession.