Less Stress: Deepen Your Relationships With Coworkers Stress Reduction by Joel Wagner - October 25, 2007July 5, 20100 I touched on this topic before in Deepen Your Relationships With Friends, but I want to get even more involved here. I want to look at specific ways that you can collaborate with coworkers. More experienced teachers These people are the lifeblood of education. We’ve all had at least a small handful of teachers who we had in school whom everyone KNEW were older than the school building, but was afraid to say it. We all know the type. But they truly love teaching. They can imagine nothing else they would do with their lives! These are the people you need to hook up with. Not only can they be unvaluable sources of free information, but they also generally thrive off of teaching you how to be great. Get together a list of questions you have (I recommend starting with these 7 questions), go ask them, and write down their answers. These become your go-to people when a difficult situation arises. Talk with them before parent conferences if you need to. Talk with them before Open House. Whatever the case, find out how it’s done at this school and what is expected of you. Younger teachers Nothing helps you to become even more solid in your understanding than to freely give it out and teach it to others. Most of us never had a more experienced teacher come personally seek us out and explain how to do things. Be that person in the life of someone else. I find that in these discussions, I usually realize the answer to one of the problems that I am currently facing will come out of my mouth while I am trying to help someone else. It’s amazing how that works and how frequently it happens to me! Administrators There it is again, that nasty A word. So many teachers see this apparent wall of separation between admin and teachers. I have worked with a handful of administrators and they generally seem very easily approachable. If nothing more than the basest of reasons, they want you to be successful so that your students can be successful so that your administrators can be recognized as being effective. So if you’re having a problem, it generally doesn’t hurt to try talking with an administrator. If you can muster up the courage to do so! Joel WagnerJoel Wagner (@sywtt) began teaching band in 2002. Though he had a lot of information, his classes were out of control. He found himself tired, frustrated, disrespected by students, lonely, and on the brink of quitting. He had had enough. He resigned from his school district right before spring break of his second year and made it his personal mission to learn to be a great teacher. So You Want To Teach? is the ongoing story of that quest for educational excellence.