Being a veteran teacher is an accomplishment. We’ve put in many years of helping children learn. We have changed the lives of so many kiddos. But, we need to remember that we can still learn and grow as an educator. We can’t become that teacher who thinks they know it all and are closed off to learning new ways to help our kiddos. We should treat each school year differently. In some way, each year should be better than the last. Here are some ways we can get ready for the school year.
Be Open to New Ideas
Guys, we don’t know everything. Being a veteran teacher means we’ve learned a lot of techniques, methods, and strategies. A lot of times we hold on to what we like or is the easiest to do. We shouldn’t do something that worked well a few years ago, but now you’re no longer getting results. We can’t hold on to old ways that don’t benefit our kiddos. So, if your school or other teachers have a new way of doing something, try it! If your school is investing in a program, there is usually research or data that shows that it works. We know that sometimes new ideas don’t work, but we have to be open to try them first.
Try Something New
Do something this school year you’ve never done before. Maybe you can try using a communication app or create a Google Classroom account. We frequently ask our kiddos to try new things and we have to do the same. This upcoming school year, I am going to read a picture book to my students daily. While for many of you this is something you do regularly, I have never read a book to my kiddos every day. Testing has always been a priority in the upper elementary grades, and we tend not to do traditional things that work. I hope that by reading a book to them daily, they will learn the skills they need to be successful on the state exam. What will you try this school year?
Have a Positive Attitude
After teaching for a while, some of us have a negative attitude. Sometimes we complain too much, or we crack one too many snarky jokes. It is okay to have a bad day or two, but we need to be mindful that we aren’t always complaining about how things use to or should be. In case you didn’t know, nobody likes being around people who are negative all the time. If you can’t change what you don’t like about your job or your school, maybe it is time to move on, and that is okay!
Setting new goals each school year should be something every teacher does. Especially us vets! Since we don’t have to spend time learning the basics, we have more time to think about the school year and what we want to accomplish. This means we can be more intentional with what we want for the school year. Take a look at your kiddo’s data and make goals based on the information you see. Create a plan on how you want to attack the school year so you can get the best results.
Although we are all going to miss summer, there is nothing like getting ready for the new school year. No matter if this is your 5th or 10th year teaching, you can still become a stronger educator. Be open to change this year!