Exercise more, give up chocolate, eat less meat… These are some common promises people make in January.
While health and fitness are important, we shouldn’t forget how we can develop professionally over the next 12 months too.
Pushing yourself outside your comfort zone, setting goals, and looking for new ways of working will help you stay motivated and inspired while teaching English.
So here are six New Year’s resolutions for English teachers you might like to try.
1. Apply for the Pearson English Global Teacher Award
Why not start the new decade off with a life-changing experience?
The 2020 Teacher Award aims to shine a spotlight on people like you! Five teachers from around the world will win an all-expenses-paid trip to attend either IATEFL or TESOL – the two biggest ELT conferences of the year.
All you have to do is record a short video. You could tell us about an experience you’ve shared with other teachers that has made a difference. Or, tell us how your English teaching has enabled you to make a difference to students’ lives.
Entries close on January 10th. Don’t miss this incredible opportunity to grow your network, develop your skills professionally, and meet other talented teachers from around the world.
2. Attend an ELT conference
Interesting plenaries, hands-on workshops, networking opportunities – there are lots of reasons to attend professional conferences.
We attend many events throughout the year and always leave feeling inspired. We love meeting other ELT professionals, learning from them and experiencing their enthusiasm for what we do – helping our students progress and succeed.
If you already attend ELT conferences, why not take it a step further and submit a talk at your favorite event.
3. Try the GSE Teacher Toolkit
In 2020, save time finding level-appropriate learning objectives, grammar and vocabulary with the GSE Teacher Toolkit.
This free, online database gives you access to over 2,000 Learning Objectives, 450 Grammar Objectives, 39,000 Vocabulary word meanings and more than 200 job profiles.
Bringing everything together in one place, the GSE Teacher Toolkit will help you make sure your classes are relevant and useful, while saving you precious time when planning.
Read more about how you can prepare students for success with the GSE Teacher Toolkit.
4. Do some action research
One of the best ways to improve your teaching is through a process of reflection and observation. By investigating your current teaching practice you’ll be able to solve the problems which come up in your class and provide a better experience for your learners.
You can carry out action research in your classroom by following these seven simple steps:
- Identify the problem area you’d like to focus on
- Create your research question
- Read up on your topic of interest
- Collect your baseline data
- Design your project
- Collect your data
- Share what you’ve learned
Read more about how to do this in our article: How to do action research in class.
5. Be more mindful
Teachers lead busy and stressful lives. It can be easy to get burned out – so why not focus more on yourself this year?
One way you can do that is by incorporating mindfulness into your daily routine.
Mindfulness refers to a state of awareness that is achieved by paying conscious attention to the present moment and observing it without judgement, with curiosity and compassion.
It can help us manage our emotions and become aware of how we are feeling – and why. It can also be used in class to help students regulate the stress around difficult times such as exam periods.
6. Go green
You will likely have read in the news about the devastating effects of global warming and the consequences for the environment if we don’t act quickly.
Young learner teachers should note that it’s the younger generation that’s leading the charge: 16-year-old Greta Thunberg was named Time Person of the Year and children around the world have taken to the streets in what’s known as Fridays for Future. It’s important that we listen, take notice and do something to help.
One way you can do that is by making your classroom practices more sustainable. Cut down on the number of photocopies you do, choose eco-friendly alternatives to plastic pens and other materials, and make sure you turn off lights and computers at the end of the day.
You can also talk about these issues with your learners and incorporate related themes into your lessons.
You can also discover our sustainability policy here.
What are your goals for 2020? Let us know in the comments!