Shaun Dallas Dance’s Blog
2020 was a difficult, challenging period. While we may not be out of the woods completely, there seems to be a light at the end of the proverbial tunnel. When COVID was at its peak, people were warned about going outdoors for months on end, with no foreseeable release in sight. In addition to the overall stress of the nation, this fear contributed to approximately a quarter of the nation concerned for their mental health.
Regardless of our industry, we all risk the feeling of burnout. In the case of teachers, it’s compounded by several factors. According to the American Institute of Stress (AIS), one in five teachers feels tense about their job, nearly 100 percent of the time, as opposed to one in eight in similar professions. The reason for this is teachers have demands coming from multiple directions, such as disgruntled parents, oppositional students, frustrating budgetary guidelines, lack of syllabus creativity, insubstantial pay, and work-life imbalance, among other reasons. There are ways to avoid burnout, but it’s essential to watch for the signs and take the appropriate measures to be your own advocate before things escalate.
Every teacher in America has been on the front lines this year. The first triumph came after restructuring their entire teaching model without warning. The following, and continuous, battles have been keeping their students engaged and ready for online learning.
When most people think of the word intelligence they associate it with the academic definition. People are often scored using metrics like intelligence quotients, also known as IQ scores, and most of the conversations are about the left-brain, activities of the prefrontal lobe, factual data, and statistics. The problem with this methodology is that it ignores the human capacity for right-brain feelings and emotions felt in the amygdala portion of the brain. Our ability to identify and manage emotions, both in ourselves and others, is known as emotional intelligence.
When you picture a country well-known for churning out excellent students year after year, the last thing you imagine is that they never do any homework. In addition, it is probably assumed they attend classes for a greater number of days throughout the year than those who test poorly on exams. However, all around the globe, this has proven time and again to be the opposite case.
Classrooms have turned into an environment where the focus is on memorization and test-taking. The core curriculum has created a nationwide cookie-cutter style of teaching that leaves very little room for creative expression. Schools in America have addressed the problem of bullying as more of an afterthought, instead of putting the idea of empathy and compassion at the forefront of teaching. Not only does this help students learn better, but it also helps mold them into better members of society as they grow up.
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