Poke Me In the Eye, Right Now!

Tomorrow I am presenting at a New Hampshire teachers conference in Concord, NH.  I have been prepping for this event and I am thrilled to be able to be there.  Also, I am working toward my professional development goals and it has made me really be reflective about my PD (professional development) and what I actually want to be able take for courses and events to go to.

Let’s face it, sometimes professional development is awful.  Sometimes PD=PMITERN (Poke Me In The Eye Right Now).  We are told as educators to be dynamic, engaging, inspiring… yet sometimes, our PD is everything EXCEPT those things.  I am fortunate to teach in a district where our PD is awesome.  I hope that is the case for you also.

A lot of times, we don’t have a choice in our PD.  However, in the case that you do have a choice, here’s some advice and thoughts about picking great “worth your time” PD.

  1. How long is the event?  Will it be worth your while in the end, to have spent that much time?  How much of a commitment to the PD is it worth to you?
  2. Can you ‘Chunk’ it?  Can you possibly do the PD over multiple days, weeks, months?  That way you can put a plan together to really get after it and budget your time.
  3. What are the reviews and word of mouth about the PD event? Try to talk to former attendees and get their honest and open feedback about the event to potentially spare yourself some wasted time.
  4. How will the PD help you toward your own professional status and/or license?  Whatever you call it in your state license/certification, etc. doesn’t matter, but nowadays these are critical to you keeping your job!
  5. How much of the event will you actually be able to use in your classroom?  This is HUGE!  If you can apply it immediately, it will make an enormous difference and is completely worth your time.

Time is everything in teaching.  Make your PD worth your time and it will make your time that much better when you are with your students!

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