I went to a great workshop last week on building relationships among teachers, and I was inspired by the idea of teachers in my department creating a “User Manual” for themselves (that they then share with me…and others?).
We all know the user manual we get when we buy a new appliance or piece of technology. It comes with some information on how it works best and what things to avoid.
So why don’t we do something similar for ourselves?! To help in building relationships and clarifying some of our personal preferences, I want my teachers to take the time to reflect on how they work best (as well as their pet peeves). This manual is a chance to bring up personal preferences and routines so that we know how best to work with each other, possibly preventing some future conflicts. It is a place for some unfiltered brainstorming on how we work best. For instance:
- What is the best time of day to drop by your office?
- What is your preferred method of communication?
- Is there a routine you have during a part of the day?
As an example, for me, having quiet time in the early morning is really important. Before first period is a time where I focus and organize myself for my day, take one last look over my lesson plans, etc., and I prefer that time to be uninterrupted. So I can communicate in my own user manual that the mornings are not a good time to “stop by.” If there is a concern you have first thing in the morning, send me and email about it or to schedule a time to talk.
Here is the link to what I came up with: Teacher User Manual. I’d love to hear thoughts and suggestions for it before I roll it out!