Question Detail

What advice would you give older (50 +) teachers? (Advice may come from both young and old alike.) Thanks.

Mar 13, 2016 11:52am

  • Arts / English Language Arts / Foreign Language / Math / Physical Education / Science / Social Studies / Technology / Other

11

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    • Mar 21, 2016 1:15am

      I'm 59. Been teaching since 1979. The thing I most like about my job: there's always a new start round the corner. I love trying new ideas and working with others. However, people,I'm mindful that this is really a young person's job. The older I get, the more it appears to take out of me. Advice to young and old alike-know your limitations!

      • Mar 17, 2016 11:45am

        I am older (50+), and the advice that I would give to me and others: Always try to improve. You learn each year, you learn from younger, and yes, even older.

        It's not so much that people aren't willing to grow and change, but from my perspective with my colleagues who are my age or older, is their self-confidence. This is especially true if you are working with a younger counterpart who is quicker with technology, quicker with lesson planning, and everything else that comes with being younger. The younger generation need to know that those who have many years of experience, also have much to offer and that when they seem reluctant to change, many times, it's their confidence that needs the boost.

        • Mar 18, 2016 2:37pm

          I have been teaching thirty years. My advice would be to never stop learning and be willing to try new methods and ideas.

          • Mar 20, 2016 11:34am

            Some experienced teachers will say that the pendulum swings back and forth, meaning that teaching practices come and go but there really isn't anything new. What I've noticed is that ideas and practices do come and go, but they return in new and improved ways. That can be so exciting and interesting! So my advice is to look for connections to the past, but also notice what's different and better and continue to refine and update your practice.

            • May 8, 2016 10:24pm

              Teachers over 50 years of age truly stands for the proverb 'Once a teacher, Always a teacher'. Looking at a teacher over 50, I can see someone who has dealt with teaching two generations. Somebody who has seen the change of trend and perception. They are a dedicated set of living encyclopedias of education. Teachers with these capacities should now be given a global platform to share the wisdom and expertise. This would help to prepare a better tomorrow.

              • Mar 14, 2016 1:03pm

                Be willing to grow and change.

                • Mar 15, 2016 6:56am

                  Anything really. Basically the same advice I might give to a novice and I'm a novice.

                  • Mar 16, 2016 1:08pm

                    What a great question! I wish I had asked it.
                    Thank you.

                    • Mar 17, 2016 12:42pm

                      I will throw these out for the young and the old alike...

                      1-It is okay to keep your favorite units, but always look for ways in which they can be updated/improved. Keep lessons relevant and challenging for your current crop of students.

                      2-Never stop participating in professional development. The moment that one loses the growth mindset is the moment that one starts to decline.

                      • Mar 19, 2016 11:30am

                        I can't tell if you mean a teacher who's just beginning teaching or one who's been at it forever. I started teaching when I was 30 and 50 is waiting for me this summer. The advice I've had to give myself is to not lose my fire. Teaching is hard, hard work. I tried to leave the profession several times in the last two years, but found I can't really earn a commensurate sum in other fields. I don't know if I would be a teacher if I was doing it all over again, but here I am, and I've had to find my second, third and fourth wind; I've had to find ways to care again.
                        On the other spectrum--if the person is brand new to teaching--I'd say, "Your life experience has taught you more than you might give yourself credit for."

                        • Apr 3, 2016 10:13am

                          We are preparing students for life after high school. For many that means work, hopefully. College learning is also work. And not everyone goes directly to full-time college enrollment. Schools need teachers with other experience beyond the classrooms.

                          You still want to be grounded in your curriculum area. This is important. Find the colleagues who want to help you. Be cordial with those who don't.

                          However, you have many opportunities to relate that content to real-world application from a first-hand perspective. I don't want the classroom to become my life story re-told but I can still see what types of encounters the youth in front of me are likely to have (working in kitchens, military boot camp, living at home in college, moving away, owning a business, marrying young and working, becoming a parent, working for an international corporation, being expected to study and learn and teach others as an employee, returning to school at different times in my life). How can I pick the right places to integrate these into the curriculum and teacher-student interactions?