Episode 4: 3 Simple Ways to Incorporate a Positive Mindset Into Your Teaching Routine
Zach Long chats with Lisa Walton about the power of positivity and how teachers can fit it into their daily routines on the More Than Teachers Movement podcast. Also discussed are the distorted perceptions of teaching by the media and general public. If you would prefer to listen to the podcast, you can check it out here.
Who Is Lisa Walton?
Teaching wasn’t Lisa Walton’s first career. She actually was a lawyer before entering the field of education. In law school, Lisa’s heart was set on eventually teaching law. However, after getting married and moving to a small town where there weren’t any law schools, she realized that teaching law wasn’t in the cards. But, teaching children was. Lisa loves learning and considers herself a lifelong learner, so she wanted to make learning just as exciting and attainable for her students. She spent 20 years in the field of education and has teaching experience at the kindergarten, second, third, fifth, and college levels. Today, Lisa is a writer who mostly blogs about teaching tips, tricks, and strategies to help teachers become healthier, happier, and more productive.
You can find her at www.onceuponaclassroom.com/blog.
Teaching Is a Lot of Work
You wouldn’t know it from movies or tv shows, but teaching is more than just standing in the front of a classroom. Teaching is a lot of work, and it’s a job that’s never over. People don’t see the hours of planning and grading that are involved. Even if you aren’t actually working on a piece of paper, you’re always thinking about that one child and how you can reach them. Teachers are constantly considering ways to make learning more interesting, more hands on, and more meaningful. At the end of the day though, there is still this perception that anyone can teach, and it leads to a lack of respect for teachers and all they do.
Here’s How to Stay Positive:
#1 Remember Your Why
Teachers are often surrounded by a lot of complaining and negativity from other teachers, parents, students, and administrators. One way that teachers can keep a positive mindset in these circumstances is to remember why they went into teaching in the first place. Most people go into teaching because they genuinely love kids and want to help kids love learning. Reflect on your why to ground yourself.
#2 Write Down One Good Thing
At the end of the day, take a minute to write down one good thing that happened. That’s it. Just one sentence. If you can focus on that one positive, then you’ll look at your day in a different light. Instead of remembering all the little things that went wrong, you’re taking the time to notice and celebrate that one thing that went right. It doesn’t always have to be a huge accomplishment either because even those small little wins really add up.
#3 Celebrate Fellow Teachers’ Successes
While they are constantly surrounded by students, teachers are largely isolated from other adults during their work day. One way to maintain a positive connection with the other teachers and staff in the building is to find ways to share and celebrate each other’s successes. One way to do this is through brag boards and text shoutouts. Another option is to start meetings by having everyone share a win or a strategy. Or, you could have a friendly bingo competition with a board full of simple, positive experiences such as making a student smile.
Lisa is committed to helping teachers be happier, healthier, and more productive. She recently launched the Happy Teacher Crew, an online support group for teachers who love their jobs, but are tired of feeling overwhelmed and exhausted. If your job is making your stressed, you can find some easy stress-relieving tips at onceuponaclassroom.com/tame-teacher-stress.
And if you want to print your own copy of Brag About it Bingo it’s available at www.onceuponaclassroom.com/brag-about-it-bingo.
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