It is inevitable that the world will change. Embracing change means embracing personal growth. Make new paths. Travel new roads. New destinations bring new expertise. Be open to that.
Be a willing collaborator
Your students will benefit from what you model. Your professional practice will improve when you invite the perspectives and expertise of your colleagues into what you do. The entire culture of a school can be upgraded when people work together toward common goals.
Build a toolbox
Don’t limit yourself to what you’ve always known. Build a toolbox of resources and opportunities, both digitally and physically.
Participate in professional development that enhances your toolbox and adds expertise to what you are able to choose from when making curricular decisions. There are tons of websites and apps that would be great for instruction, and there are tons of print resources and physical products that need to be in your toolbox should the opportunity arise for their inclusion in instruction.
In the 21st-century, toolboxes of opportunities, resources, web tools, and apps are extremely important.
Invite the kids into the curriculum conversation
The role of the teacher is changing. What the kids value is important and sometimes it’s important to give them a chance to voice both the ‘how’ of learning and the ‘why’ of learning.
Students are your partners in education, not just the objects to whom you teach.
Give students the gift of discernment
Always hold students accountable for their rationale. They should be able to articulate why they chose a particular resource or why they used a particular tool, website, or app.
Seek opportunities to extend the classroom
In the 21st-century, the teacher should not be the student’s only audience. Understanding multiple perspectives comes from experience with multiple perspectives.
Let it go
Be critically aware of the traditional aspects of instruction and what is timeless and what is mindless. Educator comfort with past learning modalities should not be a factor for defending their use in the modern classroom.
The modern classroom is constantly evolving. It is innovative and challenging, while also being inviting and valuing the voice of the child. The children. All stakeholders. The modern educator is a conductor of a symphony of awesome possibilities and a conductor of the train of excellence.