In the education field, the term New Year can mean two different things – both the start of the school year and the change of the calendar year. Both provide time for reflection as to classroom practice, what kind of teacher you want to be, and what areas you may need more professional development. At the beginning of the school year, each teacher always says “I’m going to do this differently… I’m going to do that this way this year.” From professional development opportunities to organizational skills to new methods for teaching, there are many “I want to do this year” statements.
And ask anyone in education, that many times some of those aspirations get lost in the whirl wind that is the beginning of school. Next thing you know the holidays have arrived and it’s time to make New Year’s resolutions both personally and for yourself as a teacher.
I work in preschool as a classroom supervisor. By this time of the year, we are in the thick of teaching 34 children per classroom (double sessions) the basics they will need to be ready for kindergarten. As a supervisor I plan to set several New Year’s Resolutions for myself professionally and for my program.
– To be an example of a positive attitude for my staff. This would be a resolution to not let those “little things” become stressors as well as checking family/emotional baggage at the door.
– Continue my own professional development so I may pass the information on regarding new perspectives and methods. Our teachers have such limited time to get to conferences, workshops and classes that brining this information to them is such a help.
– Mentor teachers to a higher quality of teaching. Intentional teaching, organizational skills and positive communication are the foundations of a quality preschool program. Teachers, what do you believe about a quality classroom experience. Are your children really interested in the activities and lessons you are presenting? What can you do better to make the experience more hands on?
– Spend time getting to know the employees under my supervision. Knowing what my staff needs personally and professionally is as important as the teachers knowing what the children need. You cannot teach without knowing the levels of your students.
– Enforce positive changes in the classroom that will allow for even greater learning and development for the children in our care. Settling for mediocrity does nothing for the students in our care.
Whether you are a director, teacher or paraprofessional, a New Year is the perfect time to look at your professional career and honestly look for the areas that need changing, Look at my examples and come up with a few of your own as well. Every positive change we make, can only serve children that much better.