Teaching is a profession that relies on the collaboration among peers. We thought about it and came up with 5 types of teachers. We integrate our strengths and weaknesses to create a well-oiled machine that meets the needs of our students. Right now, it is difficult to truly collaborate when we cannot be face-to-face with our colleagues.
We need all of these teachers in our school buildings. And you may not necessarily “fit” into one type. I myself am a blend of two… Have you noticed that in your classroom you are one type, but teaching virtually you are another?
Remember, this is just for fun! 😉 So…What Type of Teacher Are You During this COVID-19 Quarantine?
Teacher Type #1: Mama Bear
Traits ~ We all love the Mama Bears in the group. They are the teachers who hug their students, comforting them when times are hard. We go to them when we are feeling down, because they are “bucket fillers” with lots of positive praise. We want to sit with them during lunch and staff meetings, as they are super friendly.
How to Support ~ Mama Bears crave human interaction and friendship. They are the teachers who would love a phone call, text, drive by check-in, and/or virtual meeting session. During quarantine, they are having the hardest time being isolated from many who they care about.
Teacher Type #2 Silent Wizard
Traits ~ Students are super successful in the Silent Wizard’s classroom. They know how to “work their magic”, but do so behind closed doors. These teachers are true experts in their field, and will definitely share their tricks when asked, but do not willingly like to toot their own horn. The Silent Wizard is the one you want to sit by during staff meetings and trainings, as their insights are very valuable.
How to Support ~ If the Silent Wizard is not comfortable with distance learning and teaching virtually, they may be experiencing lots of self-doubt. If you are tech savvy, please reach out to those wizards and offer some quick tips they can use, or share with them some of the digital resources you are currently using.
Teacher Type #3 Alpha
Traits ~ The Alphas are our “go to” teachers to chair committees, help out with PTO events, and lead staff trainings. They thrive on taking charge and making difficult decisions. Classroom management is their strength. They almost always have students that are well-behaved.
How to Support ~ Distance learning does not lend itself well to classroom management, so Alpha teachers are definitely feeling some anxiety during this time. Help Alphas to make the best of this, by asking them to spearhead a drive-by parade, or other appropriate social distancing event. They get to be “in charge” of something, which will make this situation better for them.
Teacher Type #4 Techie Teacher
Traits ~ These teachers are SUPER organized. They have everything on lists, color-coded, and put into files either in cabinets and/or on computers. We run to them when we can’t find the masters for that awesome science experiment, or when we desperately need a literacy center for the week. Just sitting by them makes us feel a little more organized (and they always have sticky notes and extra pens at meetings). LOL
How to Support ~ Techie Teachers are definitely in their element teaching virtually. They have file after file uploaded and ready to send to their students, but the lack of attendance in virtual meetings and all of the tech questions are driving them nuts. Send them a funny meme to get a laugh, or ask them to help you get organized virtually. They love doing those things!
Teacher Type #5 Free Spirit
Traits ~ Free Spirits are really fun to be around. They make everyone laugh during staff meetings and at lunch. They tend to be a little impulsive, but come up with large scale ideas and when executed properly (usually with the help of the Techie – 😉 ) are the lessons and activities we remember as adults. Free Spirits create the awesome science experiments, integrate art into math, reading, and writing, and think outside of the box when teaching.
How to Support ~ When you come across some great virtual field trips, science experiments that can be done at home and on video, or awesome art projects, send the links to these teachers. The Free Spirit thinking will find a way to deliver these fun lessons to their students outside of the classroom. Just make sure that they don’t get too grandiose with their distance learning lessons. They also need to be reined in sometimes. LOL
Regardless of which of the 5 type(s) of teacher you are, the most important thing we ALL need is support. Teachers tend to be social beings by nature, so this lack of human interaction is difficult for us. We are aching to be back in our classrooms with students. Remember to check in with your colleagues… send them a note, text, funny meme, or phone call. If you have children, a short video message to their teachers goes a LONG way. Keep up those connections no matter the distance!
-Written by Janessa Fletcher
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