The 10 Books Every Teacher Should Read in 2023

A new year begins, full of new challenges and possibilities. But really, these challenges and possibilities aren’t new. They’re the same ones humans have faced for centuries; we experience them in a different context.

We’re all still trying to make sense of this crazy world and what part we must play in this grand performance of life. How do we make the world a better place? How do we find happiness? How do we experience true fulfillment? How do we achieve what we want in this life and, along the way, help a few other people get what they want?

As educators, that last question may be the most important one for us to answer. Without question, we have goals for our lives. But so much of the work we do every day is tied to helping other people, our students, accomplish their goals. Sometimes, our work helps students determine their goals.

Sometimes our work is helping students believe that their goals are possible; that they’re not crazy for being different and wanting something others may tell them is “stupid,” “not acceptable,” or “bad.”

We are purveyors in providing spaces for dreamers to make their dreams come true.

We must diligently provide these students with the support and resources they need to make their dreams a reality. We must create learning environments that foster creativity and exploration. We should inspire our students to take risks and challenge themselves to think outside the box. Additionally, we must equip them with the necessary skills and knowledge to help them progress steadily toward their goals.

As educators, it is our responsibility to be a source of guidance and understanding for our students, no matter how big or small their dreams may be. We must recognize the power of our influence and use it to encourage and empower our students to reach their full potential.

But for us to do all of that, we must take care of ourselves. We have to refill our cups, and we must ensure that we are working toward our own goals. Modeling success is key for our students. I can think of no greater tool to keep our minds sharp, our spirits full, and our eyes focused on the horizon of our dreams than reading great books.

Books are more than just an investment in yourself – they are a doorway to a world of knowledge. From novels and nonfiction to how-to guides, poetry, classics, and biographies, there’s something for everyone in the world of books. Reading can help you think more deeply, be kinder, gain a broader perspective, and become better at the things that matter to you. Books have been around for thousands of years and are still being published today, containing the distilled wisdom of countless hours of hard work. Why not take this opportunity to benefit from the knowledge stored within them?

With that in mind, here are 10 books – both recent and classic – that can help you achieve your 2023 goals and live a better, more fulfilling life.

Note: If you expect professional development books with 13 strategies and 27 tips to get more done in your classroom, you’ve come to the wrong list. These books help you with LIFE and living better in every area.

I’ll leave the boring, monotonous, ill-conceived PD books to other folks 😉

Meditations by Marcus Aurelius

Meditations by Marcus Aurelius is a collection of personal reflections written by the Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius. Written in the 2nd century AD, it is an important philosophical work exploring Stoic philosophy and its practical application in life.

mediations by marcus aurelius

Meditations is an essential read for teachers, as it offers a great insight into the Stoic philosophy and how to apply it in a practical way. It provides a framework for understanding our emotions and reactions and how to use them to our advantage. It helps to refocus our attention on what matters most in life and encourages us to be kinder and more compassionate towards others. It also offers a unique perspective on our own inner struggles and how to make peace with them. With its timeless wisdom, Meditations is an invaluable resource for teachers striving to make a difference in their students’ lives.

The War of Art by Steven Pressfield

The War of Art by Steven Pressfield is a must-read for teachers looking to break through creative blocks and achieve their goals. It examines the inner struggle of pursuing your dreams and offers concrete strategies to help you overcome these obstacles.

The book focuses on the concept of “resistance”, which is an inner force that can be physical, mental, or emotional and prevents us from achieving our goals. It encourages us to push through these barriers and to keep working no matter how difficult the journey may be. The War of Art is an inspirational read that provides invaluable advice for teachers looking to overcome their own struggles and help their students reach their full potential.

The Obstacle is The Way by Ryan Holiday

The Obstacle is The Way by Ryan Holiday is a book that explores the concept of stoicism and its practical application in everyday life. It encourages readers to confront and embrace the obstacles that stand in their way and to use them as an opportunity to grow and become stronger.

The Obstacle is The Way provides a framework for understanding life’s struggles and how to use them to your advantage. It is an essential read for teachers looking to help their students overcome their own obstacles and achieve their goals.

Steal Like an Artist by Austin Kleon

Steal Like an Artist by Austin Kleon is a must-read for teachers looking to find their creative spark. It encourages readers to look at the world from a different perspective and to embrace their own unique style. Through personal anecdotes, Kleon provides a framework for understanding creativity and how to use it to your advantage.

This inspirational read encourages readers to escape their comfort zones and explore their passions. Steal Like an Artist is an invaluable resource for teachers looking to foster creativity and exploration in their students.

Start With Why by Simon Sinek

Start With Why by Simon Sinek is an inspirational and thought-provoking book with a simple premise – that people should start with why when making decisions and formulating strategies. The book provides clear examples of how this approach can help teachers become more successful and effective.

It advocates for an approach that puts the why before the how and what and encourages readers to find their own why. It helps teachers to understand the importance of having a clear purpose and how it can help them reach their goals. It also encourages teachers to think more deeply and creatively and helps them to understand their own values and how they can help to create a better world for their students.

Dare to Lead by Brene Brown

Dare to Lead by Brene Brown is a powerful and inspiring book that explores the courage and vulnerability needed to lead. It examines how fear often keeps us from taking risks and how embracing vulnerability can help us achieve our goals. Through personal stories and historical examples, Dare to Lead provides a framework for understanding leadership and how to use it to create a better world for our students.

It encourages readers to be brave and take risks, to be honest, and open, and to find their own voice. It helps teachers to understand their own strengths and weaknesses and how to use them to become more effective leaders. Dare to Lead is an essential read for any teacher looking to become a better leader and foster a more positive and productive learning environment for their students.

Tribes by Seth Godin

Tribes by Seth Godin is a must-read for teachers looking to make a difference in their classrooms. It examines the concept of leadership and how to use it to create positive change.

The book focuses on the concept of “tribes”, which are communities united by shared values, beliefs, and goals. It encourages readers to create their own tribes and use them to make a difference in the world. Tribes also provides readers with invaluable advice on how to effectively lead their tribes, how to inspire others and how to create a positive learning environment. It is an invaluable resource for teachers looking to empower their students, foster collaboration, and create a positive learning environment.

The Name of The Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

The Name of The Wind is a modern classic, praised for its beautiful prose and captivating story. It’s also one of the few books I’ve read that have caused me to weep openly.

It follows the tale of Kvothe, an orphan seeking to make his way in a world filled with danger, mystery, and wonder. Kvothe’s journey is one of self-discovery as he comes to understand the power of words and the power of stories. Through his adventures, Kvothe learns to master the power of magic and the power of his own emotions.

The Name of The Wind is an epic adventure filled with memorable characters, captivating dialogue, and lush descriptions. It is a powerful tale of self-discovery, courage, and perseverance and is a must-read for anyone looking for an unforgettable journey. Rothfuss’s writing is beautiful and engaging, and his story is filled with moments of joy, sorrow, and inspiration.

On Writing by Stephen King

On Writing is a must-read for any creative or teacher. It’s a first-person account of Stephen’s writing process and a bit of a personal memoir. He shares his stories of success, failure, and redemption while providing advice on writing style, technique, and tools.

While the book is focused on writing, you can apply the lessons to any creative endeavor, like teaching.

On Writing is an adventure in a different kind of world where the written word is powerful beyond measure. Whether you are interested in learning how to write better or want to entertain yourself with Stephen King’s witty observations, this book will not disappoint.

The Library Book by Susan Orlean

I had to think about this last one for a while because I didn’t want to waste the slot. There are so many great books that could go on this list. But here we are with what has become one of my favorite books.

The Library Book by Susan Orlean is an inspiring and captivating exploration of the power of libraries and the stories of the people who love them. Orlean examines the impact of libraries on our lives, from the Great Library of Alexandria to modern-day libraries. She weaves together stories of patrons, librarians, and politicians, creating a vivid and compelling narrative that highlights the importance of libraries in our society. The Library Book is an essential read for anyone looking to understand the impact libraries have on our lives and to appreciate their value.

A Final Note

As we grow and change over the years, we can gain new perspectives and lessons from books we’ve read in the past. Take some time this year to revisit some of your favorites. Thumb through Fahrenheit 451 one more time. Take a stroll down memory lane with A Tale of Two Cities or The Grapes of Wrath. Dive back into the worlds of Tolkien once again. You’ll likely find something you missed and learn something new.


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Engaging Students with AI

While some parts of the education world are well on their way to banning everything related to AI, some of us are excited about the potential of showing students a tool that can drastically increase productivity and expand options for students to express their creativity and demonstrate learning.

One of the teachers in my teacher fellowship asked me about introducing the process of developing and marketing a mobile app to her third-grade students. They are working on a unit about economics.

I’m a fan of the 5E lesson planning framework. If you’re unfamiliar, The 5E lesson plan is a widely used instruction model consisting of five phases: Engage, Explore, Explain, Elaborate, and Evaluate.

During the engage phase, teachers can use various strategies to encourage students to discover more about the topic, such as an attention-grabbing hook, a thought-provoking question, or a hands-on activity. The engage phase’s goal is to create an atmosphere of curiosity and excitement, as well as to set the tone for the rest of the lesson.

I thought about creating something for the first part of this 5E framework to get the students interested in the topic of mobile app development. Perhaps a little video of a mobile app developer giving students an overview of the process?

I know access to mobile app developers is easy to come by for schools in large cities, but my schools aren’t in a large city. And I don’t have any contacts immediately available to speak to a class, whether in-person or remotely.

Which, if you weren’t aware, is the situation that so very many schools deal with every day. Access to experts in some fields isn’t readily available.

But there’s a solution.

With a little help from a few AI tools, here’s what I did…

Writing a Video Script with AI

I began by using a tool I had just learned about called TeacherBot. The folks at TeacherBot aim to “build the tool every teacher deserves.” You enter an idea into the prompt space, and TeacherBot gives you a useful output.

The TeacherBot user interface
The TeacherBot user interface

I aimed to create a script for an overview video of the mobile app development process. Here’s the prompt I gave TeacherBot to begin:

You are a software programmer. You need to introduce the concepts of coding an app for Apple’s iOS to a group of third-grade students in the United States. Create a story talking about the different phases of mobile app design and development.

I asked for a “story” and specified third-grade students to hopefully keep the response at an appropriate grade level for the students

Here’s what TeacherBot gave me in return:

TeacherBot response to prompt
TeacherBot response to prompt

Is it rudimentary? Yes. But, it is designed for a 3rd-grade audience. And it’s just an overview. If I had the learning objectives for the lesson or the unit, I might have been able to craft a better prompt or tweaked the response myself. I wanted a female speaker, so I should have indicated that in the prompt. However, that was an easy fix.

Now, I needed to create my speaker.

Creating a Speaker Image to Deliver the Script

To create an image for my speaker, I headed over to Midjourney and entered the following prompt:

minority woman, photography, depth of field f2.8 3.5, 25mm lens, 8k, ultra-realistic — v 4 — q 2 — v 4 — s 750 — uplight

I won’t go into the crafting of prompts for Midjourney here. Linus Ekenstam inspired this particular prompt, and he has a wealth of knowledge on his Twitter feed on crafting prompts.

Here are the initial results from Midjourney:

All of these images would work perfectly for this task. I wanted female minority representation for this project. Why? Because students need to know that jobs in computer programming and software development aren’t just for white men.

I choose this image from the four at random:

Now, I have my script and my speaker. Time for the final step.

Creating a Video with AI

For the final step, I turned to D-ID. After creating an account, I opened the “Create Video” tool and added the image of my speaker, and pasted my script in the script box.

An image capture of the D-ID.com interface for creating a new video.
D-ID interface

I changed the language settings to give the speaker an appropriate accent but still speak in English. Here is the final result:

Now, we have a little something to use to engage our third-grade students.

Is it perfect? Of course not. Do we still have a long way to go in the world of AI? Yes.

Will we ever get to use this tool to its fullest potential if we block it in school because we’re worried about cheating?

No.

AI is a tool, just like anything else. Use it. Be aware of what it can be used for, both for “good” and for “bad” — and keep in mind that what defines those terms is highly subjective.

But always follow Brandon Sanderson‘s Zeroth Law: “Always err on the side of what is awesome.”


Thanks for reading. You can get more articles like this as part of my weekly newsletters. I send out two per week: Tuesdays are deeper dives into education topics for paid subscribers, and every Friday, I share “10 Things” I think are cool and worth your time for free.

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Leading the Way

This is a preview of my Friday “10 Things” newsletter. Friday editions are free for everyone.

power up blended learning

Greetings, friends. It’s the second Friday of 2023. I hope you’re off to a great year. It’s also Friday the 13th, so be careful out there and watch out for hockey masks…

Here are 10 things I thought were worth sharing this week, focusing on the theme of leadership:

10 Cool Things Worth Sharing

  • Monday here in the US, we celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday. Here are 4 lessons from his leadership that apply in every organization I can think of but doubly so in education.
  • If there was ever a time for leadership amidst whirlwinds of change in the world of education, it’s now…

To read the rest, subscribe to my Friday “10 Things” newsletter.

Tress of the Emerald Sea by Brandon Sanderson – Summary & Quotes

Ah, friends. It is time that I gave you my impressions on my first book of 2023. This is one I’ve been both excited to get and hesitant to read. Why? Back in March 2022, Brandon Sanderson revealed he’d written five extra books in his spare time during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. He released four of them on Kickstarter, leading to the biggest Kickstarter in history ($42 million worth of awesome).

While there were some sneak peaks from Sanderson in the months leading up to the release of the projects, I stayed away from them. I didn’t even want to see the cover design.

So, without much to go on, I waited patiently for January 1, 2023, when the ebook of the first secret project would be available to Kickstarter backers. I got up that morning and dove right in.

And, oh my, was it worth the wait.

"She felt less like a mere human being, and more like a human who was merely being." (Brandon Sanderson, Tress of the Emerald Sea)

Book Details

Tress of the Emerald Sea by Brandon Sanderson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Series: The Cosmere

Genre: Fantasy, High Fantasy, Epic fantasy

Pages: 483 pages (Kindle)

Published: 1st January 2023 by Dragonsteel Books (Kickstarter) & 10th January 2023 by Tor Books (US Ebook)/Gollancz (UK Ebook)

What It’s About 

Tress, a young girl, goes on an epic adventure to rescue her love. Along the way, she changes. For the better. Also, sandals with socks. We sail seas that aren’t really seas and meet tons of people who aren’t who they say they are. Heck, there’s even a dragon.

At the heart of it all, the book is the answer to this question: “What would happen if the princess had to save the prince?”

How I Discovered It

This is the first “secret project” Brandon Sanderson announced in early 2022. The entire “secret project” process has been a treat to watch. From the initial hook of learning Sanderson had written books in secret to seeing the project updates and the community that surrounds these novels has been a blast.

Thoughts

I honestly wasn’t sure about this book before I began reading it. With no clue what to expect, I dove in with an open mind. Moreso than almost any other Sanderson novel, I didn’t want to put it down.

What I Liked About It

The characters, as always. The story is told from Hoid’s perspective (if you don’t know who Hoid is, this one probably isn’t for you) which is refreshing and brilliant. The humor is perfect. Tress is a compelling female lead with a great development arc and so many of the other characters have great arcs, as well.

What I Didn’t Like About It 

Only that I finished it so quickly. I would note that if you haven’t read many of the other Cosmere novels, you may miss out on a number of easter eggs and connections to the other worlds, characters, and storylines.

Who Would Like It?

Fans of Sanderson’s Cosmere books will likely be very happy with this book and the connections made within the story. If you haven’t read the books, I don’t know that you will enjoy the book as much. It’s certainly a good story and can stand on its own, but the Cosmere connections make it something special.

Quotes

(Brandon Sanderson, Tress of the Emerald Sea)

“If you wish to become a storyteller, here is a hint: sell your labor, but not your mind.”

Brandon Sanderson, Tress of the Emerald Sea
"One of the great tragedies of life is knowing how many people in the world are made to soar, paint, sing, or steer—except they never get the chance to find out." (Brandon Sanderson, Tress of the Emerald Sea)

“One of the great tragedies of life is knowing how many people in the world are made to soar, paint, sing, or steer—except they never get the chance to find out.”

Brandon Sanderson, Tress of the Emerald Sea
"Whenever one does discover a moment of joy, beauty enters the world. Human beings, we can’t create energy; we can only harness it. We can’t create matter; we can only shape it. We can’t even create life; we can only nurture it. But we can create light. This is one of the ways. The effervescence of purpose discovered." (Brandon Sanderson, Tress of the Emerald Sea)

“Whenever one does discover a moment of joy, beauty enters the world. Human beings, we can’t create energy; we can only harness it. We can’t create matter; we can only shape it. We can’t even create life; we can only nurture it. But we can create light. This is one of the ways. The effervescence of purpose discovered.”

Brandon Sanderson, Tress of the Emerald Sea
"Even small actions have consequences. And while we can often choose our actions, we rarely get to choose our consequences." (Brandon Sanderson, Tress of the Emerald Sea)

“Even small actions have consequences. And while we can often choose our actions, we rarely get to choose our consequences.”

Brandon Sanderson, Tress of the Emerald Sea
"Questions like these burdened her. Worry has weight, and is an infinitely renewable resource. One might say worries are the only things you can make heavier simply by thinking about them." (Brandon Sanderson, Tress of the Emerald Sea)

“Questions like these burdened her. Worry has weight, and is an infinitely renewable resource. One might say worries are the only things you can make heavier simply by thinking about them.”

Brandon Sanderson, Tress of the Emerald Sea
"Heroism is often the seemingly spontaneous result of a lifetime of preparation." (Brandon Sanderson, Tress of the Emerald Sea)

“Heroism is often the seemingly spontaneous result of a lifetime of preparation.”

Brandon Sanderson, Tress of the Emerald Sea
"Consistently, across cultures, eras, and ideologies, war heroes report the same simple motivation. They did it for their friends." (Brandon Sanderson, Tress of the Emerald Sea)

“Consistently, across cultures, eras, and ideologies, war heroes report the same simple motivation. They did it for their friends.”

Brandon Sanderson, Tress of the Emerald Sea

Related Books

10 Quotes to Kick Off 2023

As we enter a new year, many of us are looking for ways to spark creativity and bring fresh ideas to our lives and work.

Quotes can keep us motivated, remind us of what’s important, and inspire us to take action.

Starting this year, I’ll share 10 of my favorite quotes from the previous year to help us get on the right track.

This quote from Patrick Rothfuss’ “The Wise Man’s Fear” is fitting to begin a new year.

Ask the questions, my friends. And ask them of others. Even if they can’t answer, they’ll begin the hunt.

Here are nine more of my favorite quotes to kick off 2023:

Hard Days

The Next Step

Our Calling

Hard Work

How to Change School Practice

Sticking Power

On Greatness

Heading the Right Way

How to Really Know Yourself


Thanks for taking the time to read this post. If you’ve enjoyed the insights and stories, consider showing your support by subscribing to my weekly newsletter. It’s a great way to stay updated and dive deeper into my content. Alternatively, if you love audiobooks or are curious to try them, click here to start your free trial with Audible. Your support in any form means the world to me and helps keep this blog thriving. Looking forward to connecting with you more!

Wishful Thinking Disguised as Professional Development

This is the pattern in way too many schools. This isn’t the poor coach’s fault. This is a failure of leadership. It’s wishful thinking disguised as professional development, and it’s yet another example of a school that’s going through the motions instead of engaging in meaningful, long-term, thoughtful improvement. These wasted opportunities in schools just make me sad…

Scott McLeod

My friend Scott is talking about a forum post about a coach offering a PD session on “anything you like” for one hour.

Which is, of course, pointless.

I have been given roughly an hour for PD on January 4th to work with teachers on anything that I’d like. I rotate between 7 sites pre-k to 12th grade, but I will be working with 4th grade-12th grade teachers on this date. My boss mostly likes for me to introduce new tools to teachers during these opportunities. We have been focusing on Canva the last few months while we try to transition back to students creating work rather than the teacher worksheets, etc., that we used a lot of during the pandemic.

All of that to say, what would you use this time for? Should I show teachers how to be better organized with Google Keep/Tasks, find a free new tool for them to use in the classroom? Do you have any free project based EdTech tools that you love?

Scott’s reply:

Just wanted to say how sorry I am that you only are given 1 hour (a whole 60 minutes!) to do this important work. You and your educators deserve more systemic and strategic supports and investment than this. 😢 I’m tempted to say that, with this little time, it really doesn’t matter what you do because the likelihood of it being impactful is fairly low?

Good luck.

Sadly, this is the state of much professional development in our schools. And it’s not just a theme of instructional technology PD. We see this when schools roll out new curricula, as well. One day of learning is all teachers need to implement new programs, right?

This was the theme of my Tuesday newsletter this week, specifically on rethinking PD.

We can’t afford to think about PD like this anymore.

Long Live the Public Domain

This is a preview of my Friday “10 Things” newsletter. Friday editions are free for everyone.

Welcome back, my friends, to the show that never ends.

It’s the first week of January which means here in the US, the public domain was just infused with all sorts of new (old) content. Included this year are the later Sherlock Holmes publications (YES!) and Metropolis, an early film of art deco dystopia.

Millions of documents, images, and other media now live in the public domain, making them freely available to anyone. We can use those works as inspiration for creating our own, standing on the shoulders of giants, and bringing our own creative ideas into the never-ending mix.

As such, here are some things on content, creation, and the public domain that I thought were pretty awesome.

10 Cool Things Worth Sharing

  1. Everything that enters the public domain in 2023 (and some ideas on how you might use them in schools)

To read the rest, subscribe to my Friday “10 Things” newsletter.

Time Management Tips: Powerful Strategies to Help Educators and Administrators Maximize Productivity

Miles Davis, the American jazz impresario, once said, “Time isn’t the main thing, it’s the only thing.”

For certain, we don’t have enough time to do everything we want to do in our classrooms. But we are given the same amount of time as everyone else in this old world of ours, so we must figure out better ways to use our time.

For educators and administrators to thrive in the classroom or beyond, they need a firm grasp of time management. Unfortunately, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution – every educator has different obligations, workloads, and personalities.

The good news is that with a few powerful strategies for maximizing productivity, you can take control of your time to reach new heights of efficiency in both teaching and administrative tasks.

So let’s dive into some powerful strategies which will enable you (and, by extension, your school) to get more done in less time – so that you can focus on what matters most: creating an amazing learning environment where students can thrive.

Time management tips for educators

Educators are always looking for ways to be more efficient with their time. Here are some tips that can help:

Plan ahead. The more you plan, the less rushed you’ll feel and the more accomplished you’ll feel at the end of the day.

Set priorities. Know what is important and focus on those tasks first.

Delegate tasks whenever possible. Get help from others in your department or school to lighten your load.

Take breaks. Breaks help to refresh your mind and make you more productive when you return to work.

Use technology to your advantage. Many helpful tools online can help you manage your time better.

Tips for maximizing productivity in the classroom

To boost productivity in the classroom, several things can be done. Creating a supportive and effective learning environment is one of the most important. This can be accomplished by providing clear guidelines and expectations for the class and by interacting with students in a supportive and upbeat manner.

Being organized and having a plan for each class time are also crucial. This entails having a specific goal for what you want students to learn and a flow of activities that will guide them there.

It is also helpful to give students structure, especially if they struggle with focus or organization. This can be done by giving them specific tasks to complete during class or by providing a model for how work should be completed. Finally, it is important to remember that different students learn differently and to try to incorporate different teaching methods into your classroom to reach all students.

Strategies for conquering paperwork and administrative tasks

When it comes to conquering paperwork and administrative tasks, there are a few key strategies that can help make the process a little bit easier.

Yes, even in the digital world, there is still “paperwork” to deal with daily. It just happens to take up space on a hard drive or cloud storage somewhere. You still need a strategy for processing those files.

First and foremost, you should devise a system for arranging your paperwork/digital data. This could imply organizing documents into topic-specific folders, color-coding them, or using another method that makes sense to you. A system will help you keep track of what you have and will make it easier to find what you need when you need it.

Another effective strategy is to divide large tasks into smaller ones. Trying to tackle a mountain of paperwork all at once can be overwhelming, so take it one step at a time. Begin by identifying the most pressing tasks and focusing on them first. Then move on to less urgent matters. Breaking the process down into smaller chunks will make it feel less intimidating and more manageable.

Finally, don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. There is no shame in admitting that you are struggling with a particular task and seeking assistance from someone who can help. Friends, family members, and even professional assistants can all be useful resources for getting things done.

How to create a personal time management plan

Atomic Habits by James Clear

Making a personal time management plan is an excellent way to ensure that you use your time as efficiently as possible. When developing your strategy, keep the following points in mind.

The first step is to determine your objectives. What do you hope to accomplish in life? After you’ve identified your objectives, you can devise a strategy to achieve them.

Your time management strategy should also include a daily schedule of what you intend to do. This will help you stay on track and make progress toward your objectives. It is also critical to be realistic about how much you can accomplish in a day and to avoid over-committing yourself.

Furthermore, creating some ground rules for how you will use your time is beneficial. Will you, for example, allow yourself to check email or use the internet for recreational purposes only after certain tasks have been completed? Will you designate specific times of the day for work and rest?

Making a personal time management plan can help you do more daily and reach your goals. By taking the time to create a plan that works for you, you can ensure that you are making the best use of your time.

The benefits of effective time management for educators

Time management is an important skill for educators. When educators are organized and efficient with their time, they can accomplish more during the school day. This not only benefits the educator but also the students they teach.

There are several benefits to effective time management for educators. First, when educators are organized, they can plan their lessons better and ensure that all necessary materials are prepared ahead of time. This makes for a smoother classroom experience for both the educator and the students.

Second, when educators are efficient with their time, they can get more work done in a shorter amount of time. This allows them more time to spend on important tasks such as grading papers or preparing for future lessons.

Third, when educators manage their time well, it can lead to a more balanced lifestyle. This is important, as it can help prevent burnout.

Lastly, when educators are good at managing their time, it sets a good example for their students. Teaching students how to manage their time effectively is an important life skill that will benefit them long after they have left school.

Keep Going by Austin Kleon

Conclusion

To summarize, effective time management has numerous advantages for educators. When educators organize and use their time efficiently, they can accomplish more during the school day. This results in a more enjoyable classroom experience for both the educator and the students and a more balanced lifestyle. Teaching students how to effectively manage their time is an important life skill that will benefit them long after graduating high school.

If you’re a teacher, you already know that time management is critical to academic success. You can maximize your productivity, conquer paperwork and administrative tasks, and create a personal time management plan that works for you by following some simple tips and strategies. The advantages of effective time management are numerous; not only will you be more productive in the classroom, but you will also have more free time to pursue your interests outside of work. Learn more about how to manage your time as an educator here.


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How to Make Reading Lots of Books More Manageable

I talk a lot about reading here on this site because I believe we learn more if we read more. And if we read books that challenge us, that learning increases exponentially.

I can speak to my growth as a writer and educator as I’ve worked to increase the number (and type) of books I read each year.

Of course, everyone is different, and your reading goals likely don’t align with mine, nor should they. Your reading habit should support your goals personally and professionally.

Reading more books can be daunting, especially when you have a long list of books you want to get through. It is important to read for personal and professional development, but finding the time and motivation can be difficult.

We’re all busy and have many things competing for our time. Family, friends, work, and life ask more of us daily.

Thankfully, there are ways to make reading more manageable, so you can reach your goals without feeling overwhelmed.

Setting Goals

The first step in making reading more manageable is setting goals. It is important not to share your goals publicly as this will increase the pressure to reach them. Instead, create realistic and achievable goals that you know you will be able to meet without too much stress.

Break large goals into small ones so that they are easier to manage. For example, if your goal is to read 10 books by the end of the year, break it down by setting smaller monthly or weekly targets instead.

Putting Reading Time on Your Calendar

I’m a big believer in scheduling time in your day for the tasks you deem most important.

It is easy for reading time to get lost among other commitments throughout the day. To make sure you prioritize reading, set aside specific times each day or week when you dedicate yourself completely to reading. This could be during your lunch break at work or before bed each night—whatever fits best with your schedule.

You could even set reminders on your phone for when it’s time for “reading hour” each day so that it doesn’t slip away from you too quickly.

Joining or Starting a Book Club

Joining a book club or starting one of your own has many advantages when it comes to managing your reading goals and habits. Being part of a book club allows you to connect with others who share similar interests while also providing accountability and support in achieving your own personal goals.

There are plenty of online book clubs available if there isn’t one local enough for you to join in person, but starting one yourself would allow complete freedom when it comes to choosing topics and themes that interest all involved.

Always Carrying a Book On You

Carrying a book around with you wherever you go (Kindles and other digital readers make this easy) makes it easier for moments throughout the day when there may be some downtime or waiting around—whether that be in line at the store or waiting for an appointment—to become moments devoted solely towards catching up on some pages rather than scrolling through social media timelines or checking emails out of boredom.

As long as there’s something good enough in hand, these moments can become part of a routine, which helps keep track of progress over time and stay motivated about reaching those larger goals.

Not Feeling Bad About Quitting Books That Aren’t Enjoyable

Not every book we choose will immediately grab our attention which means sometimes we may need some convincing before we keep going with something new; however, don’t feel like quitting after only giving something new a few pages just because someone else said it was amazing —reading should always remain enjoyable no matter what everyone else says! Give yourself permission not just stick with what everyone else recommends but also take chances on those books that really spark an interest within oneself first and foremost.

Conclusion

Making reading more manageable means taking control of how much time is dedicated to getting through books effectively without feeling overwhelmed by unrealistic expectations placed upon oneself or others alike.

Creating routines such as setting achievable goals, putting reading time on calendars, joining/starting book clubs, carrying books around everywhere possible, and allowing yourself permission not to finish any books if they’re not enjoyable are all great places to start when trying to make sure all those different genres & topics get their fair share attention moving forward.

Ultimately, if you want to read more, the only way to do that is to just read more. But that’s not always so easy. These tips will, hopefully, give you some support in increasing your reading in the coming year.

The Reading List

If you’re looking for book recommendations, I release a reading list email monthly. In each newsletter, I recommend 5-10 books that I think are great, along with a one-sentence recap. I also include connections to other books I’ve read and why I think you might enjoy reading them as well.

If you’d like access to that reading list, fill out the form below, and you’ll receive the next monthly email.

My 2023 Reading Challenge

Sitting down on the first day of a new year to share something with you feels a bit… different. Over the years, I’ve been hit or miss with my blog posts and have never really achieved a consistent posting schedule.

That changes in 2023.

Along with adopting a regular posting schedule, I’m setting my goal for my reading this year. I’ve done a yearly reading challenge for the past three years and read over 100 books annually in 2021 and 2022.

For 2023, I’m upping the book count to 150.

Why? Because I looked back at my reading numbers and saw “gaps” in my reading time throughout the year. Here’s a look at my reading stats for 2022 from Storygraph:

As you can see, my reading progress suffered in January, February, June, and August. November is abnormally high due to a LARGE number of short audiobooks. I worked really hard to get my numbers for the year up. Yes, I achieved my goal, but I wasn’t smart about it.

I’ve got a better plan in place this year, not only to read more books but learn more from what I read. And that plans start with setting a goal.

Setting a Reading Goal

Setting a goal for the number of books you want to read in a certain time period can be a powerful way to help you read more. Here are some tips for making this goal actionable:

  1. Be specific and measurable. Rather than setting a vague goal like “I want to read more,” set a specific target like “I want to read one book per month.” This way, you’ll have a clear benchmark to measure your progress.
  2. Make the goal achievable but challenging. Choose a goal that is challenging enough to motivate you but not so difficult that it becomes discouraging. If you’re new to reading, for example, starting with a goal of one book per month might be a good place to start. As you get more comfortable reading, you can gradually increase your goal.
  3. Set a deadline. Giving yourself a deadline can help you stay on track and ensure that you don’t put off reading. You might set a goal to read one book per month for a year, for example, or to read a certain number of books by a specific date.
  4. Write down your goal and track your progress. Put your goal in writing and post it somewhere visible as a reminder. You could also use a reading tracker or app to keep track of your progress. Seeing your progress in black and white can be a powerful motivator.
  5. Celebrate your achievements. When you reach your reading goal, take a moment to celebrate your accomplishment. This could be something small, like treating yourself to a new book or your favorite dessert, or something bigger, like taking a trip or going out for a special dinner. Whatever you choose, make sure to take some time to enjoy your success and give yourself credit for all the hard work you put in.

Of course, I’ll be documenting my progress and learning from what I read right here on this site. You can find my GoodReads profile here if you want to see the books as I’m reading, or check right here on the blog for updates with the tag 2023 reads.

Have you set your own reading goal for 2023? Keep watching here as I’ll share more tips in January to help you read more.

MP


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