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Fearless Teachers?

Fearless: without fear; bold or brave; intrepid

The question I have been pondering today; do we need fearless teachers?

You know what... I think no. Hear me out.

Before I jump too far into this, I'm not talking about mortal fear. I do not think that kind of fear should be a normal part of your classroom experience. If you fear for your safety while at work, something needs to be done. Speak up to someone that can help.

Bold, brave, intrepid teachers all sound great to me, but fearless? I've got to say that every time I try something new in a class, there is a bit of fear. Fear of how will this be received by the students. Fear of if this will work the way I have it planned. Fear of the pacing taking too much or too little time. While these fears may not register on the same level as bungee jumping or flying cockroaches, it is fear nonetheless.

Fear is something that is normal, and is hardwired into our brains. The limbic system controls much of our emotions, including fear, and is responsible for the fight or flight reaction we have to certain stimuli. In fact, not ever feeling fear may be a sign that there is something unusual about your brain, or it could be something much worse.

If you never feel fear in the classroom, it could be a sign that you are not pushing yourself outside your comfort zone enough. I believe most of us have experienced, or know of, a teacher that was completely stagnant. Perhaps somebody that was counting down the days to retirement, or a teacher that had everything they wanted to do figured out, so they just kept churning out the same lessons year after year from the same worksheets in the same format.

Students are changing. Technology is changing. Opportunities are out there. Try something new. All that being said, here's a challenge to you.

Try something that scares you a little bit.

It doesn't have to be life changing. It doesn't have to be huge. It doesn't even have to cost any money, but try something. Something new. Something that makes you nervous. Something that makes you feel a little fear. Here's some suggestions. Some are personal suggestions, some are for your classroom. Pick one,  and if you're not familiar with it, run it through the world's second most popular search engine (YouTube).

1. Merge Cube
2. Virtual Field Trip
3. Classroom Mystery Skype
4. Zombies, Run!
5. Order something totally new from a restaurant
6. Nearpod
7. Live Broadcast to YouTube
8. Start a Blog
9. Take a singing lesson
10. Try making something from instructables

Pick something and take a step into the unknown. The more you learn to see that it will all be okay, and that your students appreciate the risks you take, the more you will begin to enjoy it. Next thing you know, you'll be that teacher that is always finding and trying the cool new things.

"Do one thing every day that scares you." - Eleanor Roosevelt

Take time to make the world a better place.

photo: https://www.flickr.com/photos/tambako/19558346556


  1. Love this!!! I hope to always have a little bit of "fear"!!


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