Stephanie Lewis - Music & Education Talks expert

Summer Vacation Reflections for Music Teachers

Are you a music teacher? Don't miss this in Summer time!

In this video, Stephanie discusses the typical thoughts of music teachers at this time of year: Summer!

Released on August 1, 2018

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DISCLAIMER: The views and the opinions expressed in this video are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Virtual Sheet Music and its employees.

Video Transcription

Hi, I'm Stephanie with VSM and my next lot of videos will revolve around teaching and education in general. Education however does involve students, parents, teachers and grandparents, so there's everyone. Hence the purpose of these videos is to provide food for thought, reflection, and promote dialogue from all sectors of the community, emphasis on the word community. Let's go.

I feel the teaching profession is amongst the most stressed out there, with pressures from students, parents, colleagues, management and politics. The duty to be all things to all people, and with an increasing sense of impotence in the face of a world where values are financially rather than culturally measured, leaves most teachers at some point thinking, "Why am I doing this?" While answers vary and range from the fairly unspecific and extremely ideological, "I want to make a difference to the world," to the much more concrete, "I want an economically safe profession," it's as telling to examine what teachers do not want too. I don't want a desk job. I don't want to work in an ethically questionable environment.

So with holidays drawing to a close, at least in this part of the world, and signs of resistance reawakening at the thought of going back to school, what to do? Well, my advice is to buy a small notebook and start to write down your values and how they relate to you as a professional. This is something that all of us in any case and regardless of our profession should regularly do in compliance with life's constant changes.

How does this help? In establishing or reminding yourself of your values, life becomes easier in coherent decision making, inclusive of those related to your profession and career choices. So here are some questions and activities to get you started.

What does your profession mean for you? List the various ways you are rewarded for what you do, not just financial though. Describe in detail one of your greatest successes. What are the regular obstacles you face in terms of resources, people, psychological health, etc. What strategies have you developed for dealing with these obstacles?

As you can see, these are useful, transferable questions or tasks for most of us, but in the case of teachers who regularly sacrifice themselves in the name of their students whilst trying desperately to ignore budget cuts and an increasingly cynical society, such reflections can help in rebalancing any uncertainties and maximize teachers' personal and professional potential. And it is this above all what we want from our teachers, as their potential will in turn trickle down to our children. See you next time, bye.
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