A new year, a new you! 2020 might have you feeling wistful about the future and how to be a better teacher, how to guide your class to be better learners and how you can get the most out of your job. Sound familiar? Well this post is for you…
You might have started the year feeling fresh and ready to go or you might be feeling the need to switch up your teaching style a little and start thinking about how to really inspire your students this year!
If you want some inspiration about how to be inspiring (thats a bit of a mouthful!) then fear not! We have you covered.
1.Be mindful of your class and take notice of how they respond
It’s important to take notice of your students, what they respond well to and what they don’t. In order for you to be looked up to and an inspiration to your pupils, it’s important to keep an eye on what works best for them whilst in the classroom.
It’s great trying out new techniques and switching up your teaching styles but if you class isn’t responding well to the change then you should maybe consider this and have a think about adapting to something that will ‘click’ with them.
Have a list of alternative ways you could teach one topic for example; fractions in maths, make an extensive list of ideas; you could use visual aids, you could get the students to ‘be’ the fractions themselves and split the class in half to show half or divide up into quarters to show a quarter. You could try diagrams or a fun, educational video. You could try out a number of these over the coming weeks and just see what works best for everyone and what gets the best results. Also, don’t worry if you have to try out a few different methods, sometimes you don’t find the right fit unless you eliminate what doesn’t work first.
2. Be exciting in your techniques
Switch it up! The most inspirational teachers are ‘different’,they have that little extra something to bring to the classroom and you can tell they are genuinely passionate and excited about their subjects.
If you’ve been teaching in the same style for donkey’s years and it works for you and your classes then fantastic, however a lot of teachers need to try out different styles until they find their perfect fit. Make each class something that you are excited about and your students will find it hard not to catch the enthusiasm.
It’s like with anything in life, sometimes you need to experiment to find what you excel at. Do some research into what kinds of teaching styles would possibly suit you and your perosnality and then you can find out exactly what you need to work on. Do you want more visuals in class, do you want to adopt a kooky approach to difficult subjects? Whatever you decide make it exciting. Your students will remember each class and hopefully everything they learn a lot more in it if you package it right. Let your personality shine through in your teaching, it will make you more relatable and will hopefully get your class to want to listen more.
3. Be engaging
If you haven’t had that cup of coffee, it’s the first lesson of the day yet and you can hear your voice droning in your own ears then that is not going to help you or your class.
Be engaging, be upbeat, get them to love the subject, be enthusiastic and into what you’re talking about. If you’re feeling like you need a little more help on this area then there are thousands of YouTube videos and books all about public speaking and how to get people to love to listen to you. There’s also classes and seminars you can take in this topic so a quick google search will throw up the best ones in your area.
However never underestimate the power of a good, informative (and free) Youtube video, some tips and a little push in the right direction is probably all you need. The RealiseMe Forum actually has a lot of videos that may assist you too, so you can always check that out too!
4. Be memorable
This one links in with the ‘be engaging’ tip from above to an extent. Make sure what you’re saying will stick and will be memorable to your students. The more memorable you make a class, the more likely it is for them to really click with the topic. They will be able to remember it when they are revising or needing to recall details.
Make it interesting and different, include little known facts that may be different from any in the standard textbooks, do your research, find ways of making any topic different from another teacher taking the class.
Share your own tips and tricks about how you remember different topics and just take your students down an alternate path. They’ll thank you in the long and short run, they’ll enjoy the class in the short term and they’ll actually be able to remember the topic in the future in the long run.
Memorable teachers are those who in ten years, your students will still be able to picture and remember their classes in detail.
Being a teacher shouldn’t be boring for you either, its important for you to feel fulfilled and pushed (in a good way) to your creative limits, finding different ways to teach is a little like writing a piece of creative writing, you don’t just want to use the same adjectives to describe things, the best writing uses a range of metaphors, similes and synonyms to engage the reader. Being a good teacher who inspires their pupils to learn more and better is like this too. Make it as interesting as possible and you will feel inspired as will your class.
So, there you go. Hopefully these ideas will get you on the right track and get you pushing yourself in the right direction, you’ll be inspiring the millions in no time! Happy New Year and happy teaching!