Teacher Skills in Wong’s “The First Days of School”


Harry K. Wong and Rosemary T. Wong are the main authors and the minds behind writing a book entitled The First Days of School. Both of them are teachers by profession therefore, why do they decide to write about the strategies that one can implement to be an effective teacher? People may venture into teaching because it is a job while some teach. After all, they want to make a difference (Wong et al., 2005). Although, the main objective of the authors was to teach how to plan so that one could plan to teach. Effective teachers establish good control of their class control by knowing what to do, maintaining a constant class procedure, and adhering to professional responsibilities.

Need for Success on the First Days of School

The first days of school predict the success or the failure of the rest of the years of school teaching. Therefore, there is a need for planning and organizing for the first day is very crucial to every teacher as it set the stage for an effective and successful teaching period. Ineffective teachers begin their first day by doing fun things they spend their whole teaching years chasing after students. The basic fundamental principle one should show on the first day is consistency as a student like systematic and organized learning. This provides them with what exactly they are getting and what will be happening as the teacher provide a safe, predictable, and nurturing environment due to consistency.

An effective teacher must possess the three basic characteristics that model the personality of the teaching profession since they aim at producing results. First, the need to be professional is dictated by the extent of knowledge about the subject that a teacher possesses. This makes the teacher confident in his or her ability to deliver the content so that students create a strong belief in the information delivered. As an effective teacher one should strive to produce the desired or intended results by ensuring continuous positive trends in performance. The strategy of performance appraisal motivates the student to give them the willpower of improving and doing their best. Finally, an efficient teacher should have a strategy and procedures for doing things right to maintain a favorable environment where learning can take place.

Effective teachers adapt and implement research-based practices that have been tested and proven by other philosophers and teachers. For example, the theory about the four stages of teaching, since many teachers know what to do and how to do it while effective teachers know the reason why it needs to be done. The first stage is known as fantasy; a teacher has to be friendly to the student and create a good relationship. The next phase is survival; they find anything for the student to do to keep them busy as it is their job to do that. Then, in the mastery phase; teachers strive for mastery of content by reading and attending the professional seminar as they have high expectations of their students to succeed. Finally, in the impact phase, students learn only when they have appreciable significance in student life by using effective teaching practices.

Positive Expectations

Attitude is the only attribute that correlates to success therefore, a teacher should have a positive belief toward a learner and can show an attempt to acquire knowledge on a subject being taught. Research conducted demonstrated that a learner would produce what a teacher expected the learner to produce. Students always produce results based on the beliefs that the teacher transmits to them, maybe they are high-ability, average, or capable learner students. It is recommended that teachers should set and communicate high positive expectations to their students to obtain greater academic performance.

People are treated directly in proportion to how they dress. Therefore, effective teacher dresses professionally to model success as they appear in front of their students. Professional dress code models someone’s respect, acceptance, credibility, and authority. Dressing demonstrates an appropriate attitude and behavior that dictates how students will conduct their behavior in class. Proper dressing builds one confidence and the perception of how a teacher should be treated in a classroom. Students do not learn because they like you but because they respect you.

Invite the student to the lesson once a teacher enters a class this gives the student a sense of purpose and importance in the learning session. The invitation builds a relationship among the participants and implies the psychology of positive expectation changing the students’ attitudes. Address the student in kind words that convey courtesy and respect accompanied by a smile on the face. Addressing the student by their name creates a mutual connection between the student and the teacher. The effective teacher provides happiness to student mind, smiles on their faces, and dreams in their minds.

Classroom Management

Effective teachers will model a well-ordered environment that consists of practices and procedures where learning can occur. Students always feel secure in a well-managed classroom where the teacher is consistent with predictable procedures and routines. The student knows what is expected of them, especially in academics since there is relatively little time-wasting, confusion, or disruption. In a disorganized class, the teacher always calls for attention from the student as there are many distractors. Classroom management includes the development of students’ involvement and cooperation in every activity and ensuring a productive work environment in the classroom. Therefore, as an effective teacher, one should have a plan to create, establish, and maintain the classroom in order.

Lesson Mastery

Mastery of content is how well one can demonstrate that a concept has been comprehended to a certain level of proficiency. What the teacher does for the learning is the instruction while the objectives are that the student is to accomplish or learn. To ensure that student understands the lesson should have clear objectives, instructions, and assessment should be aligned with the objective. The objectives should be given at the beginning of the lesson so that the student evaluate themselves as they learn with a desire to accomplish the desired objectives. As effective teacher who desires to achieve success on their first day, they should implement the principle of the learning triangle. This is a tool that is used to confirm the articulation of objectives, observance of the objective during instruction, and access the learning against objectives.

To enhance the learning of a student, the teacher should set realistic goals that will increase the likelihood of achieving to ensure the student learns without much strain. The instructions should be clearly outlined to minimize the time spent when solving conflicts with the student. Developing teams will help the students with the core work and help one another to improve their knowledge and skills. Share a common vision with the student, generate a plan, and ensure every effort is directed toward achieving it.

The Professional

Effective teachers decide to teach to be a profession but not just a job as they strive to make a difference to impact the lives of their students. Professionals are not dictated by what they do but by the way they conduct their operations as they choose to learn and grow instead of repeating the same strategy over years. They are always on an endless journey in search of new information, innovative ideas, and improved skills to impact student success and achievements. They choose by themselves to have an ongoing plan to gain full competence and strive to raise the learning level of the student without any supervision or an additional commission. Professionals do not base their success on the amount of money they have to make over some time but on the level of impact, they have made.


The objective of this book is to equip teachers with the skills that will make their journey in teaching smooth from the first days of school. It equips one with the ideas and insight that one needs to choose carefully to elevate to be a professional. Effective teachers always progress in improving themselves by attending conferences, and workshops, working as a team with other teachers, participating in staff development meetings, or even going back to college to improve their skills. Education is not a commodity therefore it will never end since there is always some higher level where one can advance their knowledge and understanding.


Wong, H. K., Wong, R. T., & Seroyer, C. (2005). The first days of school: How to be an effective teacher Harry K. Wong Publications.

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"Teacher Skills in Wong’s “The First Days of School”." ChalkyPapers, 28 Sept. 2023, chalkypapers.com/teacher-skills-in-wongs-the-first-days-of-school/.


ChalkyPapers. (2023) 'Teacher Skills in Wong’s “The First Days of School”'. 28 September.


ChalkyPapers. 2023. "Teacher Skills in Wong’s “The First Days of School”." September 28, 2023. https://chalkypapers.com/teacher-skills-in-wongs-the-first-days-of-school/.

1. ChalkyPapers. "Teacher Skills in Wong’s “The First Days of School”." September 28, 2023. https://chalkypapers.com/teacher-skills-in-wongs-the-first-days-of-school/.


ChalkyPapers. "Teacher Skills in Wong’s “The First Days of School”." September 28, 2023. https://chalkypapers.com/teacher-skills-in-wongs-the-first-days-of-school/.