1. INVEST IN YOURSELF.
As a teacher, you are a professional. An expert in your field and a leader for not only your students but your fellow educators. In 2016, don’t forget to invest in your potential. As the classes kick off and winter break fades into a distant memory of peace and calm, it is easy to put your professional development on the back burner. Here are a few ways to move your career forward in the new year:
- apply for an internship or part-time position with a local university, corporation, or non-profit to gain skills in areas such as grant writing or curriculum development
- consider pursuing your master’s degree or doctorate
- look for leadership opportunities within your school district or building
2. TRY SOMETHING NEW.
With the cyclical nature of the school year, resist the urge to simply repeat old lessons and units out of habit. Instead consider introducing something completely new. Try your hand at project-based learning. Boost classroom engagement by integrating more inquiry into your daily lessons or by completing an engineering or STEM project. The following are a few resources that we would recommend:
- MySci: a free project-based science curriculum for grades Kindergarten through fifth grade.
- Tufts Novel Engineering: a unique infusion of engineering, problem solving, and literacy developed by Tufts University. This is a great activity for students in grades Kindergarten through eighth grade.
- Studio Code: a fun and engaging way to teach coding to students of all ages, from kindergarten through high school.
3. REIGNITE YOUR PASSION.
The best way to stay passionate about your job is to avoid burnout. This year, make time for yourself, for family, or for hobbies. Find ways to collaborate with educators and organizations around you in order to ease the burden on your time. And never forget why you started teaching in the first place. Check out these tips for keeping your passion for teaching alive and well:
- 5 Tips for Avoiding Teacher Burnout
- 8 Tips From Veteran Teachers
- Why Do You Teach? What Sustains Us in Our Work
January 2016 | by, Gennafer Barajas