On the job stress is familiar to many people, but teachers in particular can face a lot of stress from their daily work. Children require constant attention, frequent redirection, and an abundance of energy. All of this can take a toll on a teachers enthusiasm for their job and can lead to teacher burnout.
To increase teacher resiliency, says Dr. Tiffany Carr, founder of “Joy in Teaching,” teachers need to change how they experience occupational stress.
The most obvious way to change how teachers experience stress is to change the stress itself. This can be done by finding ways to play in the classroom. Take a cue from the children and have fun in the classroom. When teachers are able to play with the kids they are teaching, the classroom atmosphere will be positive and conducive to learning. Teachers will benefit from this as much as the students will.
Check out this Pinterest board for ideas for great brain breaks in the classroom.
Another way to reduce stress is by learning stress reduction techniques. Understand that the job is stressful and take time to recharge. Going on a walk, doing yoga, getting out with friends, or reading a good book are all simple ways to bring mental peace and reduce stress. With a job as demanding as teaching, it is important that teachers find ways to recharge so they can give back to their students from a calm and happy mental state.
Some stress come because of stressful working conditions, so change what you can. When changes need to be made in your school or classroom, be an advocate for those by working with administrators to let them know what is needed for you to be a successful teacher. Be active in working with parents to ask for volunteers, and really let them know what help you need.
However, it is also important to find ways to accept what you can’t change. There will be difficulties with students, parents, administrators and facilities. Sometimes making the best of a situation is required when things can’t be changed immediately. This is when it becomes critical to find those stress reducing techniques that really work for you.
Remember why you became a teacher. Teachers are drawn to the classroom because they want to impact the lives of students. As you build relationships with students, you can remember the true reason for teaching is to make a difference in the lives of individuals. Remembering your motivation and seeing the good you are doing can help you when there are hard days.