The long-awaited summer vacation can be a time for relaxation, but teachers also need to consider using this time to develop their skills. Summer can provide many learning and planning opportunities that will add to the qualities that a teacher brings to a school district. There are several reasons why teachers should spend the summer developing their skills.
One reason to develop skills over the summer is to have additional endorsements. The more teaching endorsements that teachers have, the greater the ability is of the teacher to teach a variety of areas. It is important for teachers to know the requirements for the state they plan to teach in so that the correct classes are taken. By adding a teaching endorsement, a teacher can gain expertise in a variety of areas and qualify as “highly qualified teachers” as set forth by No Child Left Behind.
Increase teaching skill-increase Salaries
Most school districts have some version of salary advancement for meeting specific educational experiences. It could be for earning an advanced degree or for taking a certain amount of credits. By taking college credits over the summer teachers can improve their teaching skills and work toward educational advancements that will improve their salaries.
Improve Technology Skills
One area that teachers should try to work on skills over the summer is technology skills. Whether it is taking classes on lessons for utilizing interactive whiteboards, writing an educational blog or learning how to use cell phones in the classroom, incorporating more technology in the classroom is important as it is an area that students enjoy participating with and it makes a teacher appear more up-to-date and cutting edge.
Experience Professional Reading
Summer is an excellent time for teachers to catch up on professional reading. Whether it is purchasing one-or-two of the newest books on education or their subject matter, or online materials, teachers can use the summer to read up on topics that they may not have time to work on in the school year. By reading professional journals or other materials teacher develop their skills in working with other professionals as well as their classrooms.
If there were any problems with discipline over the course of the school year, summer is a time for teachers to reflect on the issues that did not go as well as possible and to formulate a new plan of action for the following school year. It is a good time to visit with the administration or other professionals on ideas for improving the situation or to read materials related to discipline. There are often workshops offered for teachers in the summer on the topic of discipline that teachers can take to improve their discipline skills and philosophy.
Improve Lesson Planning Skills
All too often in the hectic schedule of the school year, it is difficult to do lesson planning the way a teacher would like to. Summertime allows teachers to write lesson plans without time demands and to write materials for those lesson plans. This also will improve a teacher’s time management skills when the school year is at its busiest. Teachers will then be able to go to lessons that are already prepared and as a result, teaching will improve and there will be less stress for the teacher. As a result of summer planning, teaching skills will be improved as well as making the teacher more efficient.
Another reason to improve teaching skills over the summer is that it shows initiative to administrators. Teachers are more likely to receive favourable reviews in the school year if they have demonstrated that they are willing to work in the summertime to become better teachers. By taking college classes, earning, advanced degrees, or bring back new ideas to the school year, it show the administration that in that teacher’s classroom students will be receiving a quality education.
Invigorates the Teacher
Finally one of the greatest reasons to improve skills over the summer is that it invigorates the teacher. Teachers become excited about what they are teaching again and are enthusiastic to share it with their students in the fall. Teachers who do not update their skills in the summer are often the ones who do not really enjoy their jobs. When teachers have new ideas to share with their students they are excited to come to school every day. The greatest benefit in improving teaching skills over the summer is that it creates enthusiastic teachers who are proud of what they have to offer to the classroom. Improving teaching skills over the summer is essential to the success of teachers. It improves a teacher’s professional standing in the school district as well as bringing new ideas to the classroom too.
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