Teachers are always learning, right? However, along with the learning often comes a time when we want or need to implement something new into our classrooms.
Sometimes this can be daunting. We have also found ourselves many times being asked to try something new by the leadership team, but feeling lost on how and where to start.
When we teach something new to our students, we always break it down into small bite-sized chunks, and the same goes for us. If it is time to try something new that you just haven’t had the courage to do yet, take these small steps to help you get started:
1. Read about it
Firstly, reading and knowing the research behind what you want to try to implement is important. It will help you understand the importance of what you are doing and what you want to achieve with your students. There are also loads of places you can go online to read about how educators may have tried the same thing.
2. Make one small change
Instead of looking at the bigger picture, make one small change to start. Sometimes changing everything can be overwhelming for you and the students and you don’t want to be throwing out the baby with the bathwater. Remember - slow and steady wins the race.
3. Ask other teachers
Once you have made one small change, ask other teachers what they think or what they have done in their experience. Collaboration is key. If you don’t have colleagues or teacher friends to ask, perhaps try a Facebook group for teachers or look for some helpful blog posts about the topic.
4. Build on it
Now you have read about it, made one small change and asked some colleagues about it; it is time to build on what you have been doing. By this point, you should be armed with a couple of ideas for the next best steps to take.
5. Take a risk
Good learners are risk-takers, and that applies to us as educators. Try something completely left of field and see what happens. You will either be successful or will learn what to do better next time.
6. Ask for Feedback
Finally, feedback and reflection are important. Reflect and evaluate the changes you have made, ask your students for some feedback, and then set yourself some long-term goals to work towards and evaluate.
Everything was new to us once. Changing and growing is what makes us successful and impactful educators. What new thing are you going to try?
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