Teacher development. Continuous teacher development or CPD. How have you managed your development as a teacher in a busy schedule?

What should be chosen from such a plethora of possibilities and directions to go?

Consider factors such as your current teaching context, the students age range, the school resources, the Principal’s targets for that particular year or semester. You might want to look around first. Would you consider learning from other teachers? From teachers all over the world and with different teaching contexts? Yeah, then technology is a key tool. In order to have access to information it’s a great idea to have good and interesting pieces of information get to you, surround yourself of input that can push you forward. Here are some steps that have helped me:

  • Follow teaching communities that can add up to your vision as an educator.
  • Read and save favourite teaching-related articles,
  • Comment on posts, ask questions to the on-line community,
  • Share articles that called your attention,
  • Attend on-line conferences or webinars. In case you can not attend it on schedule, you can always refer to the recordings.

Based on your classroom scenario and your everyday experience, start by spotting a recurrent problem. You might feel the need of gathering tools and competences so that you can design a possible solution. Have you heard of Teacher Action Research? It is a path for development that can be summarized in the following steps:

  • Spot a problem (a recurrent classroom situation you would like to be different)
  • Design a potential solution
  • Take action on your solution
  • Reflect on the results
  • Capture the learning
  • Repeat the process again and again I strongly encourage you to be a part of a community of other teachers who can be allies on your development.

Follow the TeachingEnglish page on Facebook or http://www.teachingenglish.org.uk/teacher-development; Open an account on Facebook, Google+, Twitter and Linkedin. Or choose one of them. Indeed, it is possible to fit continuous professional development into a teachers’ busy life. Quoting Steve Jobs: “stay hungry, stay foolish” You can always build something better, you can always break through the status quo. Follow me @Rach_Gonzaga

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