Reconnecting with the Joy of Teaching by Finding Your #OneWord

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Reconnecting with the Joy of Teaching by Finding your One Word

Empower. Engage. Action. Commitment. Which word will set the tone for your new year?Reconnecting with the Joy of Teaching by Finding your One Word

Although the school year starts in September, we get an additional reset in January and as educators, boy do we need it.

Yes, we all love what we do, but it can be very draining at times due to the many additional factors involved in the profession. Whether dealing with the personalities of our children day to day or administration or any other outside influence, teaching is a career that requires all of us and because of that, we can easily get burned out if we don’t safeguard ourselves against it.

When choosing the right #oneword for you, consider what your goals are for the year and what word could have defined the year that is about to pass. If you’re looking to build upon that which is already happening, take the time to select a word that supports the work you’re currently doing. For example, I could have chosen the word #adventurous to describe my last four months as I have started a new job, in a new place. I could have also chosen the word #challenge.

Each word brings levels of context and connotation and as we select the word, we must consider what will be the idea thought bubble holding all of our experiences together. Remember there is no judgment for the word you’ve selected and it need only make sense to you. For as personal as your goals are, so should your #oneword be.

That being said, I’ve used words like empower and action in the past and to me 2017 is about #change. I tossed around others like #create #imagine, #dedicate, all of which would have been perfectly suitable, but instead of going for something fancy, I stuck with simple.

Choosing this word will hopefully set the tone for our return to the school year in 2017. As we come back hopefully refreshed, perhaps we can share our #oneword journeys as a call to action for our colleagues. In year’s past, I’ve done this activity with my students, and hung a bulletin board with their words and Twitter handles. Doing this gives you the pulse of where folks are in your space and how we can accommodate each other moving forward.

After you’ve chosen your word, consider writing a blog post that shares the reason why and what you hope to accomplish by year’s end with this one word goal focus in mind or keep it privately tucked away just for you as a reminder of your hopes and dreams moving through the rest of the school year.

As you reflect upon your current situation and where you’d like to be next year at this time, what word will you consider to shape that journey?


High school educator, coach, author, reformer, recovering perfectionist, Starr Sackstein leads by example both in the classroom and on the internets. Tattooed, quirky and opinionated, she takes every opportunity to learn and dispel myths and false expectations. Impassioned writer, photographer and mother to a sassy eleven year old, Starr is convinced that her cats were human in another life. Grateful Dead enthusiast and fierce defender of first amendment rights. @MsSackstein on Twitter