Summertime is important for teachers to take the time to refresh and recharge, but also develop professionally. Here’s a list of a few ways you can improve your teaching skills this summer.
1. Learn a New Skill or Improve a Current One
Summer is the perfect time to work on a new skill to use in the classroom. For example, technology is constantly evolving. Use the next couple of months to find new ways to use technology, seek new technology resources, and use new technology approaches.
Here’s a couple resources to get you started…
Smart board Savvy on Pinterest
50 Ways to Use Technology in the Classroom
2. Continue Your Education: Take some summer courses
There are many reasons that teachers should consider continuing their education from keeping up with requirements, developing professionally to monetary incentives. Whatever may drive you to seek an advanced degree, summer is a perfect time to start your journey. Don’t want to sit through class? Would like some flexibility? Check out these top online schools for gaining an advanced education degree.
3. Learn From Fellow Teachers Online
Join some online discussion forums. You can find these groups on sites like LinkedIn, TeachHub, Classchatter, and FreeTech4Teachers.com. Many teachers use online forums to share lessons, materials, tips on classroom management, engaging students and more. Educators love Twitter! Check out this list of Twitter Chats for educators. These chats are great for sharing, learning and interacting with other educators as it specifically pertains to what’s happening in your classroom.
4. Take advantage of existing resources
See if your school or district offers professional development during the summer time or search online for free professional development opportunities like teacher-led edcamps. Free learning opportunities where teachers share their expertise with one another. See if there is one close by or learn how to create your own at edcamp.org.
5. Rent Documentaries
You may be surprised what you can learn on Netflix. Look for specific details that can add excitement to a boring lesson and watch for scenes that are worth screening in class.
For example, if you teach English, seek out a documentary that supplements your knowledge of the time period in which your novels are set, whether it’s the Renaissance period, the Great Depression or World War I. For example, scenes from The Great Gatsby could be used to illustrate the economic boom during the aftermath of the First World War.
6. Get Creative and use Supplemental Materials
Visit the local library or search online for materials to supplement your lessons: YouTube videos, podcasts, magazine articles or newspaper clippings.
7. Teach Summer School
Summer school can be a great opportunity to try a new approach or teaching strategies. Check with your school district about summer school teaching opportunities in your area.
8. Make less Effective Lessons Better
Use the summer months to redesign some of your less effective lessons or create new ones. Try new lessons and unit design approaches like curriculum mapping or a lesson study.
9. Teach abroad:
There are 4 to 10-week programs that offer teachers the opportunity to teach across the world. An opportunity to teach abroad gives you the chance to learn about a new culture and gain professional perspective. Here are a few sites to help you find some teach abroad opportunities:
This summer, be sure to relax, refresh and renew. Most importantly, prepare to start the new school year strong focused on giving your students the exceptional education experience they deserve.