Professional development plays an important role in staying up-to-date on the best practices in STEM education. However, it can be difficult to decide which to choose with so many professional development opportunities available. In this post, we will focus on what you should look for in order to find the perfect professional development opportunity for you.
It has been proven that some of the best ideas come from collaboration. It is important for professional development opportunities too allow you to mingle with other educators and compare teaching practices. By combining ideas and building off each other’s useful classroom techniques, you will be exposed to better lesson plans and teaching practices. Whether you elect to attend conferences or training sessions, the professional development opportunities you choose should expose you to other educators who teach similar subjects and age groups.
Additionally, if you buy new technology for your classroom you should seek out professional development opportunities that are focused on the implementation of just that. Often these sessions break down all the ways the technology can benefit you, not only giving you experience with using it but also allowing you to learn something you hadn’t known before. Doing this will ensure you are implementing the technology in the way that most benefits students.
Finally, because collaboration is a large part of professional development, it is important to find professional development opportunities that will foster diverse opinions. Attend conferences and training sessions that bring in teachers from across the country or around the globe. With the variety in location and demographics, you will be exposed to a wider breadth of ideas and opinions that may allow you to learn more to take back to your classroom.
When taking these three elements into account, narrowing down the plethora of professional development opportunities will be far easier and allow you to find the perfect learning opportunity to benefit you and your classroom.
To learn more about where to find professional development opportunities, check out this resource: Finding STEM Professional Development Opportunities.