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Portable Practices for Promoting Self Care

March 10, 2020 / by Meg Richard

There is an old story by Loren Eiseley about a person walking along a beach picking up starfish that had washed ashore. An observer who sees the person says, “Why are you doing that? You’ll never be able to help them all?” and the person replies “it made a difference to that one”. 

If you are anything like me, as an educator I spend a great amount of my day focusing on my starfish. It's one way that I am motivated to do this important work; but, recently I started wondering about the person throwing the starfish back to sea. Doesn’t their arm get tired? Knowing we make a difference is critical to this challenging work; but, how does one keep going through the eye when the hurricane is roaring upon them?

In a recent survey by our 100kin10 collaboration team (myself and 100Kin10, NNSTOY, Danielson Group, and Teaching Channel), 98% of teachers reported feeling that social emotional development is important to their role as an educator. Two 100kin10 partners, Dana Center and Agile Mind Academic Youth Development programs, share that “we know that when educators change the culture of learning and proactively shape their students’ academic identities, students can transform their achievement”. What if changing the culture and narrative for students also means, changing the narrative for teachers? So, we asked YOU and below are some of the exciting ideas and themes that emerged. Of our 112 participant pool, many of them reported using these practices to support them in their role and on a daily basis. Please do download our infographic and use it to help ignite new ideas, practices, and ways of nurturing yourself to continue to support our students.

We hope this improves your days ahead! 

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Topics: Professional Learning, New Teachers, Teacher Wellness

Meg Richard

Written by Meg Richard

Meg Richard is a seventh grade science teacher at Summit Trail Middle School in Olathe, Kansas. She's been teaching science since 2010, and is a graduate of Central Methodist University and the University of Central Missouri. Meg is the coach of her school's Science Olympiad team and serves her district as a teacher leader. Meg is Nationally Board Certified in EA Science and was a 2019 Kanas State Finalist for the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST). Meg is passionate about integrating authentic, hands-on science experiences for her students, and at times she can’t believe she is lucky enough to get to do the best job in the world: teach! Connect with her on Twitter: @frizzlerichard

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