Establishing a professional network for teachers is essential, as it helps expand their influence beyond the classroom, share tips on how to handle unusual situations and acquire new teaching strategies and techniques. Networking gives new teachers an opportunity to impress potential employers and compensate for their limited experience in schools and universities. Additionally, young teachers who build a professional network have more opportunities to acquire valuable resources from more experienced teachers.
September 08, 2022
“The most valuable resource that all teachers have is each other. Without collaboration our growth is limited to our own perspectives.” – Robert John Meehan
Establishing a professional network for teachers is essential, as it helps expand their influence beyond the classroom, share tips on how to handle unusual situations and acquire new teaching strategies and techniques.
Networking gives new teachers an opportunity to impress potential employers and compensate for their limited experience in schools and universities. Additionally, young teachers who build a professional network have more opportunities to acquire valuable resources from more experienced teachers.
Educators network in person at annual teaching conferences or build digital partnerships online using general networking sites, education-specific social media forums and other tools.
To expand your network beyond your immediate circle, go online. Online relationships can come in handy: you’ll be able to ask for help or advice at any point of your day, find out about new job openings and establish a reputation for yourself as a specialist in your area by engaging with others.
Alstad-Davies, founder and owner of A+ Resumes for Teachers and a career coach for teachers, suggests these tips for building an online professional network:
Maintain a strong online presence
Create and maintain a professional profile on LinkedIn and any other online forums. Your accounts should look professional and tidy, be up to date and match your resume that you’re sharing with any potential new employers.
Search for interest groups
Whether you teach English or you’re a new principal, there is probably an online group for people like you. Check the websites of professional associations, which may have forums for their members or social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
Once you find a group, start by reading — and then, when you have an answer to someone’s question or an interesting article worth sharing, jump into the conversation.
Read and write blogs
Blogs are a great way to find experts in your field. Look for bloggers in your speciality, and start leaving comments on what they write. You could potentially start writing your blog if there’s an area of education that you feel strongly about and like to write about.
Use the right platforms and tools
Here are a few platforms and tools that you may want to consider using:
Join their support groups for teachers, such as:
• Facebook for Education
The group was designed to help educators connect with like-minded people, build community and discover new tools to support them online.
• Teacher Problems
This group is for teachers wanting to share their school day experiences and looking for help, support and encouragement to continue working in this profession.
• Teachers Ask Teachers
This is an online place where teachers can share stories, ask questions and seek advice on all education-related topics.
Follow relevant hashtags for any news, updates, resources and group chats:
Join their networking groups for teachers, such as:
• Teach In – Education Networkers
This group is all about networking, news, discussions and appreciation
• Teaching STEM
This community brings together individuals from education and industry who wish to promote and teach STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) subjects and activities in colleges and universities.
Following people who participate in the same discussions as you may help to discover people with exciting ideas - and initiate useful online relationships.