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The First Days of School: How to Be an Effective Teacher [With CDROM] Paperback – Jul 2004

4.1 out of 5 stars 139 customer reviews

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The First Days of School: How to Be an Effective Teacher
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 338 pages
  • Publisher: Harry K Wong Pubn; Pap/Cdr edition (July 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0962936065
  • ISBN-13: 978-0962936067
  • Product Dimensions: 20.4 x 25.4 x 1.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 998 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars 139 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #38,563 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on May 7 2004
Format: Paperback
This is the BEST book on teaching that I have ever encountered. I am two classes away from my MA in Education and feel that most of the required TEXTBOOK reading at the degree factory, I mean university, was a huge waste of time. Harry Wong's book, however, gave me excellent advice on classroom management and there are still many ideas in the book that I hope to apply one day. Everyone to whom I have recommended this book has found it to be the most useful book on teaching that they have ever read. DON'T start your first year of teaching without it!!!
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Format: Paperback
This is an excellent book for new teachers or experienced teachers who want to review classroom management and organizational techniques. A lot of the suggestions require implementation from Day One, so it's best to read the book before you start with a new group of students. There are a lot of ideas in the book that will save you time and money, and there are many ideas that you can use to teach your students to become more self-sufficient. The First Days of School is lacking in depth but it's an easy read full of practical ideas.
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Format: Paperback
I don't have much to add - the many other negative reviews pretty much say it all. While there are some helpful suggestions, most are outdated, impractical, or just plain cheesy. Perhaps the best way to make my point would be to quote a passage from page 111 where Mr. Wong gives an example of what he might say to his students on the first day of class in order to establish rapport and control:
"Welcome. Welcome to another school year.

My name is Mr. Wong There it is on the chalkboard. It is spelled W-O-N-G and is pronounced "wong." I would like to be addressed as Mr. Wong, please. Thank you. I am looking forward to being your teacher this year. Relax. I have over 30 years' experience as a teacher. I am what is called an experienced teacher, a veteran teacher.
Outside of class, I go to workshops, conferences, in-service meetings, college classes, and seminars. I also read the professional journals and work together with my fellow teachers. So you know I am up-to-date in my professional knowledge and my teaching skills. And I love to teach! I enjoy teaching, and I am proud that I am a teacher. So you can relax. You are in good hands this year with me, Mr. Wong.
You are going to have one of the greatest educational experiences of your life. We will not only study (subject), but I will also share with you some life-skill traits that will help you to be successful in tomorrow's world. I can assure you that if you should run into me at the shopping mall 25 years from now, you will say, 'You were right, Mr. Wong. That was the most memorable, exciting, and fascinating class I ever had.'
So welcome!"
I don't know about you, but I don't know any kids anywhere that would fall for that. It seems that Mr.
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Format: Paperback
I don't know what to say about this book. Perhaps, I didn't give it enough of a chance. But, most of the time I thought they were writing for 10 year olds with such wonderful insights as "cultured, polite people can be identified by their manner... if you abuse a child, the child will grow up with expectation of being abused by others" (71). And, there was an especially bizzare section that I thought must be a joke. I must quote this at length:
If we are to prepare students for tomorrow's world, we need to know the world. If you do not know the world, ask your principal for a day off and go take a look. Stand at a major airport and watch passengers disembark from United, Lufthansa, and Japan Air Lines.
Then go downtown in the business district of a city and watch the successful people walk by--executives, shopkeepers, salespeople, and secretaries...
Having observed the world, after you have dressed in the morning, look at yourself in the mirror before you go to school to face your students who will see you as a model of success in tomorrow's competitive global economy. Ask yourself the following three questions....
2) Would McDonald's allow you to hand food to a customer dressed the way you are? (page 58).
Wow.
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By A Customer on Feb. 27 2004
Format: Paperback
There are too many negative reviews for this book. It is sad to say that our educators cannot look at this book and others objectively and realize (before reading any book) that there is no one proven method on how be an effective teacher. Harry Wong offers many suggestions that can only work if you attempt them and attempt them more than once. Being an effective teacher takes trial and error to see what works with the students that you have now. He does offer many things that may appear to be common sense, but if they were, why are many teachers failing to do their job? I reccommend that new and veteran teachers alike read this book and try some of the different methods that he suggests. I have found that while many do work, there are some that do not. I have also found, after seeing on of his sememars on video, that many readers lose his witty sarcasm and take what he says as rude, arrogant, or just plain harsh. Wong's approach to teaching is that is should not wear you out the way that it does many teachers. He says that effective teachers are not worn out by attempting to manage their class, teach the lesson, and even handle discipline. Done properly, effective teaching is rewarding and refreshing. I highly recommend this book and, if possible, also recommend that teacher try see any of his seminars, either in person or on video. Together, each makes much more sense, and ther viewer can get many effective ways to not only manage their classroom, but teach the students so that they can obatin mastery.
(Note: If you have read and or watch any video by Wong, you will notice that a lot of my wording comes from him and what he has to say)
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