In Tao philosophy there’s an expression: The journey is the reward. For teachers this is undoubtedly true. The job satisfaction of imparting knowledge, gained throughout the voyage from student to NQT to fully qualified teacher, is surely second to none.
However for this amazing adventure to continue, new destinations must be mapped out. Whether you’re aiming for an in-school promotion or a move to fresh challenges, it helps to roadmap your career.
So here’s the Teacheroo sat-nav to reaching your future career goals. And, of course, enjoying the entire journey.
Make space for yourself
To plan short and long-term career goals, it’s vital to first take care of the here and now. Fully familiarise yourself with the curriculum. Create a course overview for the year. Keep a detailed calendar so there are no last-minute surprises.
All of these direct actions will make more space in your working life so you can see the bigger picture.
Being stress-free and time-richer will allow you to fully assess how you feel about your current work environment . . . and where you want to see changes made.
Write down your objectives
Consider what exactly you want to happen in your teaching career. For example, when do you want to climb the next rung to a promoted role? Is there an opportunity for a salary increase by taking on new, exciting duties?
Why not write down these objectives? This gives them a sense of reality. These are no longer aspirations: they exist in black and white.
By inserting dates for these goals to be accomplished, you create a timeline of where you want to be and when. Refer to this often to motivate yourself as you continue on your journey.
Consider what’s worked before
You are where you are today in education through learning, skills, determination and passion. There may well have been a lot of fun in the mix too.
What there certainly will have been is a series of small victories. So reflect on your past accomplishments. Make a list of these achievements as reminders to yourself of why you were successful – and how amazing that felt.
Now work out how you can repeat this positivity to set goals and move your career forward. Your plan should incorporate effective tools you’ve used before, as well as new teacher resources for any areas where you stalled.
Keep track of your progress
Not all of future career goals can or will be met immediately or in the short term. Circumstances change and so, too, may your personal and professional aspirations.
Being patient, keeping track of your progress and being willing to adapt are all important, if you want to keep moving.
Boost your experience and USPs
Education career routes put a huge emphasis on experience, especially for NQTs, so don’t forget every term is a new opportunity to get time served and improve your skills.
You can also take part in online seminars and up-skilling workshops. These won’t take up too much of your free time but can lead to accreditations that are gold stars in your resume.
Joining in with the conversations on Teacheroo, meantime, is a great way to share ideas for mapping career goals. It’s also ideal for networking.
Always be proactive and prepared
Don’t wait for a random email or a chance encounter to signpost where you might be going with your career. Be noticed online, be ambitious with your applications, be the one who seeks attention from recruiters.
By being proactive and prepared, you’re mapping the road ahead and your career calling card will be first to arrive at each new destination.
Finally, remember: it’s never too early or never too late to set out your goals and roadmap your career . . . and you can start your journey right here with Teacheroo.