During this time of year, I like to think back to 9 years ago. I had already gotten my first job and I was just kind of waiting in the wings until the school year started and I could get into my classroom and really start the work of teaching. By this time - 9 years ago - I had signed my first teaching contract and I spent that entire summer crafting - Pinterest was really big at that time.
When I graduated from college was really when Pinterest exploded. I had all of these different classroom crafts pinned on my Pinterest board and I spent the summer fulfilling my greatest Pinterest dreams by crafting some of that stuff. And then I also bought a lot of stuff as well. And it's so funny to think back because at the time I had a retail job where I was making money on the side, but I really didn't have the funds to be coming out of my pocket for my classroom, but I did anyway because I was just SO EXCITED and so ready to start teaching and to have my own classroom. When I think back on that time for me, there is this little sense of nostalgia because I didn't know what I didn't know.
I had no idea that the same excitement that drove me to arrive early and stay late, the same energy that I thought would make me a good teacher, would actually drive me to my first burnout encounter. Over the last few years, as I’ve explored self-care and wellness, I find myself thinking about what I wish I knew
Could I have prepared better?
Could I have decreased the intensity of my burnout?
On this episode, my guest Evette Rawls and I discuss our own memories from when we were newbies. We also chat about what it means to be a new teacher in 2021 and what new teachers can do to teach and live more authentically. Evette is an incredible educator who is passionate about supporting teachers especially new teachers! In the summer of 2020, I had the opportunity to participate in her Dear New Teacher Micro PD on Instagram and what she does for teachers is incredible.
Evette believes that new teachers deserve to feel guided and supported as they start their teaching careers. When working with new teachers, she stresses the power of CONSISTENCY - consistency with yourself, consistency with your students, and consistently growing. She encourages teachers to identify their WHY because - when you know the why behind your choice in becoming a teacher, you are equipped with the power and the strength that you need to keep showing up when things get hard. Evette believes that self-awareness is your foundation - it’s the solid base you need when you feel like everything is falling apart. Part of being self-aware involves making sure that you’re not only taking care of your physical self, but you’re also feeding your spirit. If you’re only feeding your spirit “trash” and moments and experiences that lack inspiration, you won’t be able to show the world your true, best self.
I hope you enjoy this conversation and Evette's inspiring nuggets of wisdom!
New teacher, and all teachers for that matter, Remember to nurture yourself, not just your teacher self, but also your soul. Be consistent with your values, with yourself, and with your students.
Be kind and take care!
Facebook: Evette Rwals