Teachers are constantly reinventing, revising and reflecting on their teaching skills. Every teacher has his or her strengths and weaknesses. This New Year, these are my five New Year’s resolutions to become a better teacher.
Many teachers I know are extremely organized. I am not one of them. My computer files are not in organized files. I have teaching resources thrown in bins and binders upon binders of worksheets. This year I vow to put my teaching documents into organized files and recycle any papers I do not need. In addition, I need to label all of my bins and binders. It’s frustrating to have to recreate something that I know I already have, simply because I can’t find it.
Continuing education and professional development are one way to fine-tune my teaching skills. I am interested in taking some administrative classes in case I ever want to pursue that field of education. Classroom management skills are always an interest to me, so this is another route I may take. Frequently, I work with explosive personalities and behavior issues. Finally, I need a few more units to inch up on the payscale. Continuing education is the way to do this.
Taking a CPR/First Aid Class
While I am CPR certified, I feel this is a skill that is extremely important. While I have never had to use CPR on any of my students, it is definitely something I want to be proficient in. I never know when a student may choke, injure themselves during PE or have an allergic reaction. As a preventative person, I minimize risks by knowing about all children’s allergies and illnesses. Yet, every few years, I think a refresher course is necessary for anyone who works or lives with children.
Brush up on my Spanish
For most of my teaching career, I have worked with bilingual children. In college, I took a lot of Spanish courses. At the beginning of my career, I worked with children who were new to the country. For this reason, I needed to know a lot of Spanish. As I began to work with older children and had many bilingual colleagues, I used my Spanish less and less. Now that I have been staying home with my daughter, I need to brush up on my Spanish. Next year, I plan on having many bilingual students and parents and need to be prepared to speak with them.
Find Out More About What’s Hot and What’s Not
As I get older, I find I am more out of touch with things that are popular with students. It is important to know what books, movies, toys and tech gadgets are in style. In this way, I can plan interesting lessons and find out how to reach kids that appear unreachable. Some kids say they don’t like to read. In my opinion, every child likes to read if they find the right material.
Happy New Year to all the great teachers out there!