Ain’t nobody got time for that.
I hear this phrase a lot – maybe not word for word, but something along the lines of…
A) She’s got too much time on her hands.
B) Obviously she doesn’t have a family.
C) I don’t have time.
D) I’m too busy.
It’s a common excuse that teachers hear from students regarding their homework. I don’t know about other teachers, but the homework I set is to consolidate student learning. It covers things we have already looked at in class. It’s not compulsory, but often gives me feedback on what I haven’t covered properly in class. By setting the homework, I am hoping that students will be confident in completing it, to prove to me that they have improved upon the set topic.
What about teachers? Do they strive to improve on their teaching? Or do they just think that by completing a four year degree, or maybe a Dip. Ed, that they have completed their education? Sure, schools offer PD opportunities – the compulsory ones like First Aid and those PLC meetings, full staff meetings, etc. But what about taking the learning into their own hands? Surely teachers don’t believe that they can’t improve upon a single area of their teaching…
This morning I read this article, tweeted by @johnqgoh: “More teachers sacked for bad behaviour than poor skills”, courtesy of The Telegraph. It refers to ‘fixing’ teacher’s classroom skills, informal training, formal training and teachers having a mere ‘basic’ knowledge of the curriculum.
I feel disappointed that teachers don’t feel that they need to improve. Any employee, whether they are a garbage collector, funeral director, teacher, accountant or scientist..can improve. I have heard staff say, “I don’t have time for that”, referring to the invitation to sign up to a blog, join Twitter, create an e-book, or navigate Pinterest. Learning about technology can be daunting, but it’s a necessity in today’s classroom.
Tomorrow, I am introducing the idea of iPad Bingo to my staff. It’s a bit like their own homework task for the holidays – to consolidate and improve their iPad competency with the new iPads they have had since the beginning of Term 4. Some teachers are more confident than others, hence the 2 different levels. Scan the 2 QR codes below to check out the iPad Bingo.
As a third year teacher I know that I am only at the beginning of my teaching career. I know I don’t have my own children, or any pets, but that doesn’t mean that I work 24/7 on lesson plans and classroom strategies. I look for any opportunity to try something new, to innovate and to extend not only myself, but my students.
If teachers aren’t prepared to push themselves to improve, how can they expect their students to?