3 Ways to Support Teachers Year-Round
Nothing says appreciation like the right tools, resources, and support
Every May, the nation celebrates Teacher Appreciation week. And, while thank-you notes from students and acknowledgements from parents and administrators are always nice, there are common-sense things schools can (and should!) do on a daily basis to support educators all year long. Here are three things you can do now to recognize and respect the teachers in your schools and district:
Foster a culture of innovation
Innovation is key to success in the classroom and pretty much everywhere else. Schools that cultivate a culture of innovation empower teachers to test out new approaches, ideas, and lesson strategies — and that can lead to better engagement and increased efficiencies in the classroom. Whether it’s a new digital tool, distance learning program, blended learning approach, or other activity, investing in innovation fosters creativity and helps teachers stay motivated year-round.
Improve access to professional development (PD)
Teachers have a lot on their plates, and finding time for PD can be a challenge, so can finding the right resources to support personalization for each student. Schools need to provide teachers with effective, relevant, and meaningful tools and content. Whether online, in person, or a combination of both, PD must be engaging, germane, and actionable for the teacher.
According to the results of a new research study conducted by Project Tomorrow in collaboration with DreamBox Learning, “Creating a school culture that supports professional learning for teachers, both in school and out of school, can result in increased teacher confidence in their instructional practices and a mindset for continued improvement.”
Empower parents and other learning guardians to take a more active role
Schools can help reinforce the important role of all learning guardians — those inside the classroom and out. Encouraging parents to get involved in their child’s education splits the onus between teachers and parents. For their part, parents can help reinforce classroom lessons at home so students retain more of what they learn at school.
This year, if you really want to show how much you appreciate your colleagues, give them what they need to succeed: the freedom to explore innovative teaching tools, the time to take advantage of professional learning opportunities, and the resources to build a collaborative and nurturing environment in which to teach.