Friday, January 2, 2015

In my December 3, 2014 post I focused on teachers Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and suggested that teachers learn a second language.  Here are several additional suggestions:

1) Teachers can keep a daily journal.  If on paper, they can put a security lock on it so no one, including spouse and kids, can see it.  If on a computer, they can protect it with a password.  It's for venting about their day, exploring crazy ideas that may or may not work, spelling out hopes for the future, and offering prayers to reach their students.

2) If a teacher learns something  new about "teaching" it will not cross over or help them learn about their subject matter or vice versa -- teachers must learn about "teaching" and their "subject matter" separately.  

3) Teachers need a computer and Internet access at home so that they can remain in touch with their students, parents, and colleageus.  If an idea occurs to them and they need to send an email or perform some research then they need to have Internet access at that point and not just when they return to the school building.
4) Teachers can learn about academic subjects other than the one they teach.  I'm not advocating that teachers pursue multiple degrees necessarily but they can become familiar with other fields.  For example, teachers can take training or self-educate themselves in the fields of psychology, sociology, and education.  In psychology, teachers can learn about neuroscience, learning disabilities, personality development, and mental health issues to name a few.  Sociology knowledge can include an examination of education, race, gender, organizations, and families within the context of a society.  As part of this process, teachers can create a reading list for themselves which can include resources such as books, newsletters, magazines, blogs, fiction, non-fiction, journal articles, and international publications.