Teaching Tuesday: Finding Your Purpose in Uncertain Times

By Dr. Marjaneh Gilpatrick, Tracy Vasquez, and Sonya Berges

a woman writing a thank you note

As an educator during these days of uncertainty, it can be easy to lose track of days and wonder where the time went. After a week or two of working or attending school from home, you may find yourself wondering how to keep your passion and purpose alive as an educator. How do you maintain your drive to learn, lead and serve? Our College of Education faculty have provided a few strategies that may be helpful.

Be Intentional

One way is to be intentional about using your time. For each week, set a goal to read two or three new articles about a strategy you have always wanted to try. Watch a video of another teacher modeling this approach. Then, invest the time to journal and reflect on how you will implement this when school is back in session. Within each day, plan out your schedule with items such as meditating on a Bible verse and praying, exercising for 15-30 minutes, completing work tasks, researching new ideas and spending time with your family. While you may not always complete each of these fully, you will have a target!

Additionally, give yourself and others grace. This is a new experience for each of us and we all cope in different ways. One Bible verse that may encourage you is Romans 15:13 – “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” (NIV).

– Sonya Berges, Assistant Professor

Stay Connected

Another strategy is to maintain your connections with your peers. This can be done via virtual meetings where success stories can be shared and celebrated. Furthermore, those colleagues can brainstorm with you on ways to motivate and engage your students while you are teaching remotely.

Show Gratitude

Yet another strategy is practicing gratitude. Take a moment to pause and reflect on those who have been instrumental in your success as an educator. Perhaps you can write them a note letting them know how they have served as a mentor to you. Those heartfelt notes can not only remind you of your purpose and passion as an educator, but also bring joy and happiness to those receiving the note.

Ultimately, remember that passion is inside of you, so it is always helpful to practice reflectiveness to remind yourself of the incredible and amazing values you bring by fulfilling your purpose as an educator.

Want more? Check out all of the articles from Teaching Tuesday and return each week for a new post. To learn more about the College of Education and our degree programs, visit our website and join in our efforts to elevate the education profession.

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