As the school year winds down, it’s time to look ahead and make sure the teaching staff will be motivated and ready for fall classes. I used to be a teacher. So I have been a participant in some of the worst, most boring, waste-of-time, teacher staff development workshops on the planet! But it doesn’t have to be.
We all need energizing, morale boosting, and reminding why we chose this wonderful profession. Just like we don’t want to be boring for our students, teachers don’t want to be bored either! The solution? Make sure team building is collaborative and fun for teachers.
More and more we hear about collaborative teams in the corporate world. As stated in a previous blog, millennials are the future leaders and overall workforce which thrive in collaborative environments. Academia has caught on as well.
Teachers Learn in Order to Teach Students
Since a meaningful education continues to be more interactive, it is important to focus on working well with others. When creating educator specific workshops for schools, I focus on how well teachers work together amongst themselves. This then enables the teacher to uncover first hand, effective ways to reach out to their students and teach them through collaborative skills.
Kind of think of it as testing the hypothesis before putting it into use. If teachers learn how to interact with one another collaboratively, they can teach their students how to harness this important life skill. Team building workshops that enable teachers to learn how to work together to solve a problem or complete a task provide insight that can be applied to teacher-to-student or student-to-student interaction during the school year.
As the world thrives on collaboration, teachers too must look to this trend and ensure the classroom is preparing students to collaborate outside the school environment. However, don’t discount the power of collaboration between teachers. Educators can benefit from collaboration with peers too.
Teachers Learn from One Another
Traditionally, teachers arrive at school, go to their classroom, teach their classes, take a break for lunch in the teacher’s lounge, teach more classes and go home for the day. However, times are changing! Teachers connect more with teachers in their own schools as well as educators in other districts more and more.
In fact, in a growing number of schools there are often set groups of teacher teams that teach the same group of students throughout the year. Not only do these teacher teams get to know their students better, they are provided a golden opportunity to work together as peers to help students or learn new, more effective ways to teach their students.
To have the best team building workshops, make it collaborative and address these important aspects:
- Remind each other why they became teachers
- Build trust between teachers
- Uncover each other’s differences and strengths
- Boost teacher motivation and turbocharge attitudes
Make it FUN
The most successful teacher workshops are the ones that are the most FUN. That’s right, having a good time is a key ingredient for successful team building for teachers. Why? Because we learn best when having FUN.
The first tip for team building workshop for teachers to make sure it does not end up like an in-service program. Team building should engage the participants, not lull them into a state of submission. Mix it up and start by warming up the participants with a fun game or an ice breaker.
Once the participants are warmed up and ready to grow, keep peppering fun, engaging activities throughout the workshop focusing on:
- Better communication with one another
- Problem solving/decision making
- Working together through trust
- Adaptability to difference in personalities/backgrounds
One way I accomplish these goals is through games. Games facilitate camaraderie among participants while having fun. It is a way to be silly, laugh and in most cases enable teachers to get to know one another better since they are sharing a new experience for the first time. What better way to be collaborative and fun at the same time!
Overall, team building for teachers should reinforce the principles of “TEAM”:
Trust Empowers All Members
Together Effective, Apart Miserable
Total Effort by All Members
So, remember when planning for next year’s school year success, it all starts with how well the teaching staff is nurtured. Go out there, work together, laugh together and embrace the power of “TEAM”.
Larry Lipman Knows Team Building for Teachers
I was a teacher for 15 years. So I experienced ineffective teach workshops that didn’t motivate teachers, but bored them to death! I am allergic to boring. Because of that, I have created teacher workshops that educators will truly enjoy. I facilitate seminars that are interactive, learn-by-doing, and rich in content. Participants will learn life skills that they can apply in the classroom and at home. Call me today at 770-333-3303 and find out how I can customize a educator team building day specifically for teachers!