What does it take to be a good teacher and a creative one at that? Although a degree, experience, a great school, and a well-stocked classroom are always helpful, we find the teachers that set themselves apart are the ones who understand creativity the most. Teachers are constantly faced with the challenges of bringing an edge to education and creating a dynamic learning environment for their students amidst the standardized tests and tasks. We thought we would make your lives a bit easier by pulling together a few ways you can challenge yourself to remain passionate and creative about your work.
For those in a business setting, this article still applies to you. It’s essential to understand how to coach and direct your teammates and employees. Parents, yes, you can get something out of this too- at home you nurture your children to grow and take on the world. That is no small task, and it can be overwhelming! Being a great educator in any setting or as part of your job role isn’t the easiest, but remembering the importance in what you are doing, along with the key items below, is essential and will help bring focus to your work.
Here is a summary of the key ideas.
LOVE WHAT YOU DO
Your passion for your job fuels everything, and your students can see how you feel about your material. If you aren’t excited, why would they be? If it feels impossible because you are not loving your job or if you’re feeling stressed, remind yourself of what you do love about your job. It’s bound to help you feel a little more creative and inspired.
GET OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE
We get it. Things are a lot a easier to teach when you do it the same way you always have. But what if you injected some new material you were excited about into your subject matter? How would that change your delivery of the information? Try sharing a few new topics or ideas, and getting involved with the material in a new way. You might end up learning something yourself.
CELEBRATE SUCCESS FAILURES
Allow some room for error. Not everyone gets it right the first time but celebrating those efforts can make it that much more enjoyable. This will give you a new perspective about your work and allow you to look forward to taking more risks in the future.
10 out of 10 times when we think we know it all… We don’t. Encourage others to share ideas and give insight on topics. Listening and being responsive allows students to build confidence in their own ideas while feeling good about doing it.
Go ahead and take a last minute detour from your fixed agenda. Being flexible opens the door to new teaching styles. Those learning may enjoy the change of pace and build a new form of interest.
DON’T TAKE YOURSELF TOO SERIOUSLY
Good teachers recognize the balance of being a disciplined instructor and remembering that we are all human. Laugh with your students and laugh at yourself every once in awhile.
If you are feeling inspired to expand your horizons with new teaching materials, you may want to take a look at our Teacher Close Reading Curriculum – Ingredients of Young Outlier, Chapter 1 “The Ego”. Here is your chance to start educating now!