Overview of Professional Development Workshops for Teachers

Teaching is a profession that requires immense creativity and constant update of knowledge. The teacher’s profession is just like any other and benefits immensely from professional development programs. These maybe undertaken out of personal interest or may receive grants from the school, university, or local body. Here are few quick things to know about such workshop for teachers.

Some unique tools and techniques taught in professional development program for teachers

● Dealing with the fear of creativity

Creativity is part and parcel of a teacher’s life. A professional development program crafted for teachers usually imparts techniques such as writing and visualization, along with relaxation exercises that help them get over the fear to express themselves. This could be related to taking a bad picture, writing foggy paragraphs, singing out of notes, I and so on. Getting over the fear of creativity also helps overcome self censorship. This helps in the early stages of creation where overt use of critical and analytical skills can hamper the creative process.

● Building teamwork

Teamwork is the collective effort of many, and inculcating this quality in students helps a teacher mould them into individuals who can work later on in team settings. This trait taught as part of the program also helps teachers make the students become more self confident and respectful towards other team members.

● Map making

Another quality that is taught in professional development courses for teachers and educators is that of map making. A map is basically a way to move forward in a project that is creative or analytical. Creative workshops for teachers help them develop journey maps and scrolls either by themselves or along with their students. This helps them illustrate the process and progress of their work. Such maps may be virtual or written representations, and help students and teachers see when they are on a projects, and where it can be taken.

● Storytelling

Storytelling is yet another beautiful art taught in professional development workshops. This art form helps teachers and students understand how they perceive the world and share it with others. Storytelling activities often include two or more participants who switch characters and slip into each others’ skins. This enables participants to pick up listening skills, and enhance the ability to learn from peers.

● Freeform writing and automatic drawing

Professional development programs for teachers imparts free writing and automatic drawing techniques, in order to help them find ideas and develop them. These tools inculcate imaginative editing techniques through a series of exercises that are aimed at fostering and improving creative thoughts and actions.

● Putting the environment to use

The natural surroundings or environment that one belongs to is often the best tool to generate ideas. Professional advancement workshops for educators often includes exercises that are carried out in various locations such as cafes, libraries, cafeteria, parks, mountains, and many picturesque places, which often heighten creativity inspiration. This act helps participants realize that the biggest source of inspiration can often come from the most simple everyday and surprising places.

● Time management

Managing time in a busy, fast paced world is a challenge not just to teachers, but almost anyone. Workshops for teachers often include modules and exercises that help participants manage the time more effectively, and to put them to use for more productive activities. This is made possible through exercises that help them use time in smaller blocks rather than at a continuous stretch. In this manner, teachers and students are able to do satisfying creative work without interruption, on an ongoing basis.

Grants, fellowships, and credits for professional development programs

Professional development programs for teachers are often eligible to receive fellowships from different bodies. The sum for research fellowship is decided by the governing body, and the ability of participants. Sometimes teachers from rural background are eligible to receive special grants for promoting education in such areas. This may be available to not just one, but a team of 2 or more teachers as well. Also, financial help may be available from the school district or university. For this reason, participants are advised to contact respective professional development for educators officer before enrolling in such a program. An addition to grants and fellowships, creative workshops for teachers are also eligible for continuing education units as well as credits when taken as a subject of independent study. Certificate of attendance and CEUs are usually made available by the people who conduct the program.

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