Joyce McConnel has declared November 22 through 24 as paid professional development days. So, what exactly does this mean?
Professional development, as most of you may know, is the tools and resources that educators can use to improve their teaching quality and effectiveness. With the prolonged break taken from teaching in person due to the COVID-19 pandemic, in person teaching can seem like a whole different world. With professional development days being offered, they can make the change from online to in person classes smoother.
Just like how students have had to make the change from online classes to in person classes, faculty and staff members have had to do the same. The transition doesn’t seem like it would be that difficult, but it does bring on some challenges. These challenges may be surrounding student’s needs, such as that they may have not retained a lot of information taught in their previous classes and there could be gaps in their knowledge on some topics. With the course loads being lighter online, a lot of students may need to re-learn some things before moving on.
There are many reasons that professional development days are important to have for educators. Professional development provides faculty and staff members with better ways to teach their students. This can help, not only with the change from online to in person classes, but also with the change in students. As new classes and new generations emerge into the college classroom, there will be ways of teaching that are more effective than others.
These days during Thanksgiving break are given to faculty and staff members to encourage them to widen their range and explore different ways to teach. Not only does professional development help with teaching styles, but it also helps with developing better planning and organizational skills. This helps faculty and staff members organize and plan their curriculum better to then provide their students with more time rather than professors focusing on other projects.
Professional development does not only mean the tools and techniques professors can use to enhance their teaching quality, but it can also be more focused on their mindfulness. The Center for Mindfulness is a great place to look for a more self-reflection related development during this time or at any time through the year.
Although we are not sure exactly how CSU will be offering these teachings during these days, we do know that they will be helpful in not only making the teachers’ lives easier, but also the students. When the faculty and staff are creating good quality and effective curriculums the students are more engaged and excited to learn.