The Teacher Tip

From Surviving to Thriving: Thoughts for Teachers

June 8, 2017

Adapted from Finding Joy in Teaching Students of Diverse Backgrounds by Sonia Nieto.

If we expect students to thrive and learn, it’s not enough for teachers to merely survive, grinding it out day after day, with tired ideas, low energy, and little support. Our students deserve teachers who are excited about teaching, passionate about learning, and energized to make a difference in students’ lives.


What does it mean to thrive as a teacher?

  • Thrive despite anxiety, insecurity, and frustration: Don’t be dragged down by other teachers’ negativity. Cultivate your inner motivation and align yourself with people who are also happy and professionally motivated.
  • Thrive by learning: For many teachers, to thrive means to continue to learn—and learn with passion each day. Push for excellence by listening to and learning from your students. This helps create more empowered learners.
  • Bring feeling back into teaching: Step away for a few moments from templates, standards, and rubrics. Teachers who thrive remember that caring and love are a significant part of teaching. They are involved in their students’ lives, thinking, hoping, and worrying about them every day.


Hope is what keeps teachers going, in spite of everything that gets in the way.

To learn more about Finding Joy in Teaching Students of Diverse Backgroundsclick here.

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