Many teachers need extra support right now.
Creating a strong personal support network can be one of the best ways to stay focused and thrive during the school year. A personal support network is more than having a family member or coworker to vent to after a difficult day. It is a network of people who are there to help you, are mindful of your needs, and care about you.
The best personal support networks are comprised of people who will:
- Give helpful advice
- Build you up and give you confidence
- Provide constructive criticism and help you grow
- Be concerned about improving your well-being
There are many types of support, and it is important to tap into a variety of forms for maximum benefits. Here are a few:
Instructional coaches and curriculum experts can support teachers’ instructional needs. One way to take instructional support a step further is by implementing a professional learning community (PLC) within your school or district. PLCs give educators the opportunity to collaborate and communicate with one another; share tips, ideas, and lessons learned; and mentor each other. A great way to facilitate these PLCs is through online forums or chat rooms.
School and district administrators play an essential role in supporting teachers and staff. They need to really listen to teachers, find out their pain points, and take action to help them.
Strong communication is key. Administrative staff should set office hours when they can be reached, and teachers should be encouraged by staff to stop by to talk.
Connecting with Peers
Leaning on colleagues for advice and to trade ideas is a valuable form of support. Likely there is another teacher who has experienced a similar issue or problem. Connecting with colleagues can strengthen peer relationships and can be an opportunity for mentoring.
You can expand your peer network through educator-based online support networks and learning communities. Join one or more, and share in a wealth of knowledge from educators across the country.
Support from Friends and Family
Those closest to us are valuable resources for support. They lend an ear to listen on especially difficult days; they care about us and our hopes and dreams; and they want us to succeed. They also tend to know us very well and can offer constructive criticism.
Social and Emotional Support
Many schools have SEL programs to help students and teachers build social and emotional competence. Aperture’s EdSERT is an example of a quality SEL program for educators, and it includes professional development, self-reflective assessments, growth strategies, and guidance on creating a personal development plan.
There are many types of support teachers can rely on to stay happy, healthy, and productive this school year. Find the strategies that work best for you!
Learn more about SEL for teachers and how to stay energized and supported throughout the year. Chat with our SEL experts today.