Companies hiring teachers to serve as freelancers and independent contractors are seeking specific skills in these candidates. Private companies are paid big money to produce the work that their consultants and freelancers produce, so the end product has to be stellar. There are specific things that classroom teachers can do to hone the skills required to be successful in these positions. Today we share six key actions to take while still teaching that help position you as a freelancer later.
Leading Professional Learning Communities equips one with the skills necessary to work with adult peers in a collegial setting. The leader is often responsible for ensuring that the PLC has a predetermined goal and agenda, has the necessary resources to achieve the goal, and stays on task so that the goals are achieved. This requires the leader to be organized, deliberate, and possess the unique communication skills required to redirect adult conversation if necessary.
Do instructional coaching. Either holding a position in instructional coaching or volunteering to coach new teachers during your planning time can accomplish this. Instructional coaching cultivates ones ability to give growth feedback to peers and establishes you as a trusted authority in best instructional strategies. It causes others to see you in leadership role.
Stay abreast of trending topics in education. By nature of the profession, many educators are very familiar to the ideas that are popular in their school, district or state, but those ideas are limited. Education is a world-wide conversation and a successful freelancer or contractor will be in the know of those topics beyond their immediate circle. Subscribe to publications specific to your content area, follow influencers in education on Twitter, and subscribe to Smart briefs from respected sources like ASCD to stay in the know.
Be Tech Savvy or at minimum eager to learn how to use new devices and platforms. Every organization has a unique way of work as technology is concerned. Learning to navigate different online systems can be tricky or even frustrating, however, it is critical. Being able to operate both Window’s based PCs and Apple Devices in addition to having a working knowledge of Microsoft Word and Excel will set an excellence foundation for the myriad of technology demands working as freelancer will require.
Facilitation Professional Development sessions as frequently as possible. Doing so is one of the easiest ways to establish yourself as highly knowledgeable in a subject area. The rationale is if your school or district leaders trust you to impart knowledge in other teachers you are a candidate that has been a student of her craft.
Be a great teacher. There is little that goes further than your leaders being able to authentically share that you are great teacher. From a leadership perspective, being a great teacher is more than working well with students and teaching dynamic and engaging lessons. It also includes aspects such as working collaboratively with teammates, coming to work and meeting on time consistently, and willing to go over and above when needed. These are all areas of interest when organizations are considering who would be an ideal addition to their team.
Being intentional about executing the activities while in the classroom is imperative to a smooth transition into edupreneurship. These practices will create positive experiences for you while teaching and will elevate your resume so that you are best suited for a position as a freelancer.