Are you thinking teaching IS your passion? That’s great, but odds are that if you eat, sleep, and breathe teaching you are going to burn out. You will go down in a spectacular blaze of teaching glory, but you will burn out. As educators, it is vital that we are passionate about our students, but it is just as important that we take care of our passions outside of the classroom. This makes us better humans and better teachers.
What Are You Passionate About?
Happy Teachers Make Time for Their Passions
The Power of No
Schedule Your Passions
Take Advantage of Your Commute
Use the Buddy System
Do you have a friend or coworker that also enjoys the same things you do? Ask them to set a standing date to take advantage of your shared interests. Start small with a monthly meet up and see how it goes.
For example, my friend and I have a standing dinner date every first Tuesday of the month where we go try something new and chat. It is seriously one of the things that I look forward to most and knowing it is coming always makes me smile.
Happy Teachers Follow Their Passions At School
Now that we’ve talked about following your personal passions outside of school, let’s talk about at school. Some passions, like reading, translate easily into our classrooms. We are able to share this love with our students seamlessly and are better teachers for it!
Other passions don’t directly translate into the classroom but can serve as relationship builders between us and our students. For example, my passion for auto racing doesn’t necessarily apply to the classroom, but you can bet I share it with my students. When you share your thrills with them, they share with you and a bond is formed.
Students innately want to know about you and your life. While I have always protected my personal life from them I find it fun to share hobbies or where I have traveled to. It is always amazing to me how you can tell your students one thing, such as I race a Miata, and they will parlay that over into thirty other conversations that will stretch out months.
When we share our passions with our students they are also able to see what there is out there in the world to discover. A student who never thought that auto racing was for them may turn around and decide to give it a try later in life because they remember something I shared.
For more ideas on how to be a happier teacher check out 11 Things Happy Teachers Don’t Do.
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