Developing an Activity Adviser PLN
At a summer adviser training, a veteran adviser expressed the thought that activity advisers don’t really have a professional learning network in their schools. Who else in your school understands the challenges of the job you do working with your student organization? Who can offer support when you’re feeling dejected or ideas when you are fresh out? It might seem like extra work to add professional development for advising to your already long list of things to do, but the rejuvenation you will experience by connecting with other like-minded educators can make all the difference between getting fired up and burning out.
Benefits of Attending Conferences
Participating in professional development opportunities at conferences has advantages both for the adviser and for the activities program:
• Develop more creative projects by picking up new ideas from others.
• Use resources more effectively by learning about good sources of materials, training opportunities, and publications.
• Reduce the stress in your life and have more successful activities. You don’t need to reinvent the wheel with every project—there’s probably someone somewhere who has “been there, done that” and can offer advice on what worked for them.
• Develop a shared sense of mission by realizing that you’re part of a broader effort than just your school. There are others who also are “fighting the good fight” to build stronger activities programs.
Adviser's Guide to Student Activities
Educators who find themselves taking on the role of adviser to a student activity organization often have received no training on how to be an effective adviser. Rather than leaving new activity advisers to sink or swim on their own, the Adviser’s Guide to Student Activities offers guidance on how to work with a student organization. Chapters on getting started, organizing the work, meeting management, financial management, evaluation, and recognition provide strategies and tools to help make the advising role go smoothly.
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