First of all, let’s remember what priorities are: short-term goals. These are the things that you want to accomplish in any given period of time. The more your goals represent your values, strengths and passions, the more likely you are to achieve them. The same thing goes for your priorities. A lot of people are stuck with to-do lists that have a lot of “shoulds” rather than their choices. Why not recreate your to-do list and have it reflect the things that represent your authentic choices?
In order to begin to manage time in a way that makes you feel in control, you can reset your priorities by following these three steps:
1. Be aware of how you are currently spending your time
The first step to changing your relationship to time is to assess how to spend your time. Write down all the things that you do. How much time do you spend in each area? The way you spend your time is a statement of what your priorities are.
2. Assess how satisfied you are with the way you are spending your time
Next, think about the most important areas of your life (e.g., career, relationships, personal development, finances, health, fun, service etc).
• Rate each area in terms of how important it is to you. Use a scale of 1-10 with 1 being “not important” and 10 being “vitally important.
• Now rate how well are you living each of these areas. How satisfied are you with the amount of time that you spend on this area? Rate this on a scale of 1-10.
Look back at those areas that you rated as very important (8, 9 or 10). If there is a gap of 2 or more points between how important an area is and your satisfaction rating, chances are that you are feeling a lack of balance because there is a gap between what is important to you and what you are actually doing.
3. Set new priorities to start doing more of the important things in your life
The third step to reordering your priorities is to figure out what important activities are missing from your life and As you review each question, right down the activities that come to mind.
1. What is the most important thing in my life right now?
2. Where would I want to spend more time?
3. Where would I want to spend less time?
4. What areas need my attention now (e.g., school, talent, health, relationship)?
Write down your activities in the order that feels most important to you. This is your new list of priorities.
Remember that your priorities can change in any given period of time. If there is something important on your list that you do not have time for right now, think about when you can slot that in. It’s another way to take charge of time and feel in control.
Enjoy your new list of priorities!
EFFECTIVE LESSON PLANNING, DELIVERY TECHNIQUES AND CLASSROOM MANAGEMENT SUGGESTIONS
Good lesson planning is essential to the process of teaching and learning. A teacher who is prepared is well on his/her way to a successful instructional experience. The development of interesting lessons takes a great deal of time and effort. As a new teacher you must be committed to spending the necessary time in this endeavor.
It is also important to realize that the best planned lesson is worthless if interesting delivery procedures, along with good classroom management techniques, are not in evidence. There is a large body of research available pertaining to lesson development and delivery and the significance of classroom management. They are skills that must be researched, structured to your individual style, implemented in a teacher/learning situation, and constantly evaluated and revamped when necessary. Consistency is of the utmost importance in the implementation of a classroom management plan.
All teachers should understand that they are not an island unto themselves. The educational philosophy of the district and the uniqueness of their schools should be the guiding force behind what takes place in the classroom. The school’s code of discipline, which should be fair, responsible and meaningful, must be reflected in every teacher’s classroom management efforts.
- Establish a positive classroom environment
- Make the classroom a pleasant, friendly place
- Accept individual differences
- Learning activities should be cooperative and supportive
- Create a non-threatening learning environment
- Organize physical space; eliminate situations that my be dangerous or disruptive
- Establish classroom rules and procedures and consistently reinforce them
- Begin lessons by giving clear instructions
- State desired quality of work
- Have students paraphrase directions
- Ensure that everyone is paying attention
- Ensure that all distractions have been removed
- Describe expectations, activities and evaluation procedures
- Start with a highly motivating activity
- Build lesson upon prior student knowledge
- Maintain student attention
- Use random selection in calling upon students
- Vary who you call on and how you call on them
- Ask questions before calling on a student; wait at least five seconds for a response
- Be animated; show enthusiasm and interest
- Reinforce student efforts with praise
- Vary instructional methods
- Provide work of appropriate difficulty
- Demonstrate and model the types of responses or tasks you want students to perform
- Provide guided practice for students; monitor responses and deliver immediate corrective feedback
- Use appropriate pacing
- Be aware of your teaching tempo
- Watch for cues that children are becoming confused, bored or restless; sometimes lesson have to be shortened
- Provide suitable seatwork
- Seatwork should be diagnostic and prescriptive
- Develop procedures for seeking assistance; have a “help” signal
- Develop procedures for what to do when finished
- Move around to monitor seatwork
- Vary methods of practice
- Evaluate what has taken place in your lesson
- Summarize the lesson and focus on positive gains made by students; use surprise reinforcers as a direct result of their good behavior
- Determine if the lesson was successful; were goals accomplished?
- Make a smooth transition into next subject
- Have materials ready for next lesson
- Maintain attention of students until you have given clear instructions for the next activity
- Do not do tasks that can be done by students (i.e. passing out paper or collecting assignments); use monitors
- Move around and attend to individual needs
- Provide simple, step-by-step instructions
- Utilize a freeze and listen signal, when necessary
- Develop positive teacher/student relationships
- Set a good example; be a positive role model
- Create an exciting learning environment for all students
- Reward good behavior; create special activities that children will enjoy doing
- Correct misbehaviors; have consequences of disruptive behavior; communicate them to children
- Handling disruptions
- Keep is short and simple (KISS)
- Use a warning system
- Defer disruptive behavior proactively (eye contact, close space between you and student, use head/hand gestures)
- Help students be successful
- Use planned ignoring (and teach other student to also ignore)
- Classroom Management (geekymomblog.com)
- Classroom management 101 (slideshare.net)
- Top 5 Classroom Management Tools for Teachers (teacherlingo.com)
- Classroom Management Strategies (certificationmap.com)
- Reminder: iNACOL Webinar | 9/19 – Becoming a Blended Learning Teacher (virtualschooling.wordpress.com)
- Scholarship of Teaching and Learning- Examples in Math, Classroom Management, Educational Technology, and Catholic Schools (murraylauren.wordpress.com)
We all have weaknesses, and we always try to work on eliminating them – on changing ourselves in order to become better. But change is difficult- very difficult. What if instead of trying to eliminate our weaknesses, we embraced them for what they were?
Think about your biggest weaknesses at work and in life. What qualities are you most unhappy about? Of the following list of 16 typical weaknesses, look carefully and choose the three that resonate most with you:
Got your three biggest weaknesses? Great. (Don’t be too depressed, the rest of this activity is more fun). Next, look at the below list, find the same three weaknesses, and look at the traits to the right of each of your three biggest weaknesses:
1) Disorganized —> Creative
2) Inflexible —> Organized
3) Stubborn —> Dedicated
4) Inconsistent —> Flexible
5) Obnoxious —> Enthusiastic
6) Emotionless —> Calm
7) Shy —> Reflective
8) Irresponsible —> Adventurous
9) Boring —> Responsible
10) Unrealistic —> Positive
11) Negative —> Realistic
12) Intimidating —> Assertive
13) Weak —> Humble
14) Arrogant —> Self-Confident
15) Indecisive —> Patient
16) Impatient —> Passionate
The three qualities to the right of your three weaknesses are all strengths.
Hidden in your weaknesses are your strengths.
Every weakness has a corresponding strength.
The idea here is simple: Instead of trying to change your weaknesses, accept them. Don’t try to fix them – it’s too difficult. Instead, be sure to leverage your associated strengths. You can look to colleagues, direct reports, and even supervisors to fill in the gaps where you are weakest. Don’t be afraid to ask people for help- they can add value where you are weaker. But be sure to embrace your strengths, and build upon them. After all, your strengths (even those disguised as weaknesses) – will get you far in your career, and in life.
Now it’s your turn. Did this activity resonate with you? Were the strengths corresponding with your weaknesses accurate? What are your greatest weaknesses – and strengths? What are the takeaways for you at work and in life? Let me know your thoughts in the Comments section below! And here’s to your secret strengths!