Over the last year, many of the conversations around the dramatic changes we’ve seen in education have centered around the impact on students . What about educators?
The demands on teachers have been enormous. In a recent episode of the Multipurpose Room podcast, “Ways to Support Teacher Well Being,” guest Rebecca Arnold, CEO of Root Coaching & Consulting, talks about the importance of investing in teachers and your education community. She is joined by hosts from K-12 Clothing, Debora Jones and Wes Jones.
Looking for more ways to foster a positive school community even amid a pandemic? Download our free ebook with stats and tips here >>
Where are teachers getting their support?
With the shift to remote and hybrid teaching, students and parents are relying on teachers for guidance and support during these challenging times. Where are teachers getting their guidance and support?
On this episode, Rebecca said, “Prior to COVID, there was a stress epidemic in education from preschoolers all the way to superintendents, and COVID has exacerbated it.”
Anxiety and trauma among students were already trending upward, and teachers have long been struggling with the ability to support trauma and conflict-based instruction. Then, COVID hit. Teachers were already grappling with meeting all the needs of all students, with bandwidth stretched to capacity.
What can teacher ask for?
As individuals, putting our well-being at the forefront, though easier said than done, can help to manage challenges. By supporting our educators, we support students. As a teacher, if you are not getting what you need from your school, district or parents, here are some tips:
1. Ask for meaningful check-ins to talk about “realities on the ground” with other teachers. Many staff members who have worked together for years or decades are no longer seeing each other on a daily basis. Build in time at the beginning or end of virtual meetings to have meaningful catch up and connection with others.
2. Request the PTA help to build the bridge and communication between teachers and parents. One of the biggest stressors for teachers is communicating with parents. There is much the PTA can do to help.
3. Insist on virtual training. Time must be allowed for training and professional development to continue. Teachers need to come together to talk about their calendars, struggles, what new strengths they are developing, what’s working and what’s not.
4. Focus on the positive. We tend to focus on the negative, what’s not going well, and then that’s what’s top of mind. There has been much success during this year. Focus on what is going well and take time to celebrate that. Sharing new ideas helps others as well.
5. Don’t suffer in silence. Be honest and ask for what you need, even if you don’t know exactly what that is. There are lots of mindful and supportive offerings that schools can provide – yoga, guided meditation, therapies, and other tools. Having a range of tools for teachers to access to support their well-being helps them as well as students and parents.
Rebecca is a certified, professional coach, speaker, and writer. She supports her clients to transform into their most powerful and purposeful selves, and to thrive personally and professionally. She offers various presentations and workshops on successful self-care strategies and plans for educators. For more information, go here.
To learn more tips to support teachers, listen to this episode here.
Want even more great advice? Hear from Traci Fairchild on how she and her school have been navigating the emotional and developmental challenges COVID has posed in a recorded webinar here >>
About Multipurpose Room Podcast
Multipurpose Room podcast, supported by SquadLocker, is hosted by strategic partner K-12 Clothing, a PTA-Dad created business that provides high-quality school apparel while increasing access to educational resources through fundraising in schools. The Multipurpose Room provides real-life issues that PTAs, PTOs, and school staff are dealing with and offers practical tips.
SquadLocker supports schools by managing the entire process of acquiring custom school uniforms, sports gear, and spirit wear – from instant online store creation to free graphic artwork assistance as well as decoration, production, and fulfilment. Learn more at https://www.squadlocker.com/solutions/schools.
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