Friday, October 13, 2017

Teaching Tip #32

Teacherscribe’s Teaching Tip #32

If you’re looking for an engaging listen or for some professional development, the Entreleadership podcast has been my go to for three years now.  There is no question I’m a better teacher because of it.

Andrews works with business moguls, NFL and NCAAF coaches, and everyone in between to help them improve their business and coaching strategies.

I believe that teaching is coaching and vice versa, so when I saw this episode on my podcast app, my ears perked up.

And I hit the mother load.

Andrews’ take is not revolutionary by any means.  You can boil it down to this – if you want to get results that are different than everyone else, then you have to do what everyone else isn’t doing.

Sounds simple, right?

But here is the catch: the best way to do this is to start with small – seemingly insignificant changes.  Think of Malcolm Gladwell’s Tipping Point here.

So what little changes can you enact that – over time and done with enough consistently – that will pay huge dividends down the road.

Here are the little things that I have changed over the past few years that have had the greatest impact on my teaching, the culture of my classroom, and impacted students the most.

Note --- none of these are world changing.  If I can’t do them, anyone can.

Small change #1 – be open to social media.

There are so many benefits to just Twitter alone.  Not to mention Facebook and Instagram.

I mean, good lord, Kayla Delzer has built an empire using social media, so you’re telling me we can’t use it to have some leverage with our students?
One way I use social media – and this is still considered taboo by many – is to engage with students via Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

The benefits of this are obvious –

Students need digital role models.  They see enough morons on their social media feeds.  Why not be the ray of light in their feed that shows them how awesome it is to be an adult who is an active, passionate life long learner with a family who loves life?  

Students crave contact.  They are not like us when we were in high school 25 years ago.  They crave interaction.  This is a great way to interact with them.

It’s a great way to provide parents, administrators, school board members and so on windows into our worlds.  Think about it – when you buy a house, you can bargain shop, you can research it, you can haggle over it, you can tour it, you can have it inspected.  When you buy a car, the same is true.  However, when you send your kid off to school . . . for some of the most importance experiences of their lives, what do you get to learn about the teachers and classrooms they will be entering?

One of my favorite lines from this podcast is – you don’t need a bunch of fans, you just need a couple raving lunatic followers.  They will do more to spread the word about your program or class than anyone else.  And they often spread it through social media.

Here  are some examples –

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