In addition to paying proper attention to their basic needs for nutrition, hydration, sleep, exercise, and emotional and spiritual refreshment, teachers also need:. Belonging: Teachers need to feel positive connections with other people, both in school and outside school. Significance: Teachers want to know that they make a positive difference through the work they do.
Positive engagement: When teachers enjoy their work, they have great energy and passion for their teaching.
Balance: Healthy teachers set boundaries and create routines so that they can have rich lives both in the classroom and at home. Anderson devotes a chapter to each of these needs, describing in frank detail his own struggles and offering a multitude of practical tips to help readers find solutions that will work for them.
When teachers find ways to take care of their own needs, they will be healthier and happier, and they will have the positive energy and stamina needed to help their students learn and grow into healthy adults. Mike Anderson is a professional development specialist and consulting teacher for Northeast Foundation for Children, a nonprofit organization that supports teachers across the United States in implementing Responsive Classroom teaching practices. He taught 3rd, 4th, and 5th grades in public schools in New Hampshire and Connecticut for 15 years.
Others seem to have just settled into a summer routine and now it's time to gear up once again. My summer has been unexpectedly hectic with a full calendar in the upcoming weeks as we get ready for school at the end of the month. That sort of pressure is what really pushes me to work and play more efficiently, knowing that the lolly-gagging of summer will come to a halt soon.
To that end, I made a quick list of things that had to get done in the coming weeks. I should probably just keep it front and center on my desk to keep me on track throughout the year! If you're gearing up for back to school and you haven't already read it, grab a copy to help you get in the mind-set for a productive and balanced school year.
It's one long string of text using only commas- exhausting and not helpful! Every teacher sees students who love to show what they know by speaking, but struggle to produce the same result in writing. Cancel anytime. Feel as if you always put yourself last? Levin , Hardcover
It's a quick read that can yield great results and perhaps even keep you from feeling overwhelmed at the start of school. It's essential that we take care of ourselves before doing our best to foster the healthy development of children.
Certainly, that the path to doing our best for children can be complex and murky. The Well-Balanced Teacher: How to Work Smarter and Stay Sane in the Classroom and Out is a masterful piece of work that delicately and articulately combines Anderson's observations as a teacher and consultant with hard research and his keen observations about teaching and life.
This concise powerhouse of a read outlines how teachers need to -- and can -- care for themselves before they can give their best to students and schools. Seems like a pretty simple message, but if you know any teacher, you know that message often gets put on the back burner. Much like Daniel Pink asserts in his book, Drive , Anderson aligns the key to high performance in the classroom to the basic human needs.
We need to feel a genuine sense of belonging and significance and have a balance of autonomy and connectedness to allows us to feel our work has meaning. Simple concept.
Challenging to put into action. The Well-Balanced Teacher goes beyond citing what we already know about meeting basic needs sleep, food, water and feeling significant in our community and competent in our craft. Many of the points Anderson makes are ones we know in our heart, but the reminders are appreciated.
He goes on to provide cogent tactics and strategies to work more efficiently.