In our 21st-century world, it's important for teachers to create and maintain an updated virtual presence. An online portfolio not only allows you to reflect on your classroom experiences and connect with other educators, but also provides a platform to showcase your work in a digital, easy-to-access format. Teachers can establish a digital teaching portfolio by creating a blog, website, or professional presence on social media websites, which can help you showcase your experience and abilities in interview settings as well as to current students, parents, and employers.
Starting a Blog
A blog is a fantastic way to reflect on your craft, which is vitally important to your growth and success. It also allows you to curate and display evidence of your abilities and classroom experience. Think of a blog as an online resume, version 2.0. Typical resumes are brief and include only basic information, such as education, work history, and a small section about relevant experience and skills. A digital teaching portfolio in the form of a blog provides a more dynamic representation of you as an educator.
While there are many great platforms you can use to create blogs or websites, such as WordPress, Blogger, or Edublogs, it's better to create an account with a hosting service such as Namecheap or Bluehost first. A hosting service creates a personalized, professional URL for your site. Your page will appear more legitimate if you can drop the "wordpress.com" from the middle of the URL.
Read more at Hey Teach: Start a Teacher Blog Today
While part of the beauty of creating a blog is that you can express yourself creatively, there are a few basic pages or sections you should be sure to include. For example, an "About" page or drop-down menu that includes a resume, published articles, and contact information is a must. If you have a skill set that may help you stand out from the crowd, such as the ability to work with specific technology or assessment programs, you should include another page in your navigation menu to showcase those skills.
Creating a Website
Websites can also help employers, students, and parents understand your professional potential through reflections and resource sharing.
Teachers can easily create a website through Weebly or Google Sites. Google unveiled long-needed updates to Sites in 2016, making the platform even more user-friendly. Many teachers use Google Sites to create classroom websites for informational and instructional purposes. Teachers can harness the power of Sites to show employers, parents, and the community what their classroom looks like.
Your website might include an "About the Teacher" page, pages for each of the courses you teach, and a "Classroom Happenings" page that provides a glimpse into your learning environment. You can also showcase examples of a lesson or unit plans, projects, or student work. Include anything on your website that will help build your digital presence and demonstrate your skills as an educator.
Read more at Hey Teach: What I Look For In a Teacher Candidate
Dos and Don'ts to Keep in Mind
- Share information about what's happening in your classroom.
- Reflect on what is and what isn't working in your classroom.
- List relevant skills and classroom experiences.
- Share articles, interviews, and other projects that you've been involved with.
- Feel like you have nothing to share.
- Sugarcoat your classroom experiences.
- Vaguely describe your skill set.
Creating and maintaining a digital portfolio is extremely important for modern teachers to help them market their skills and abilities in an increasingly digital society. Use one (or more) of these ideas to promote yourself and connect with your audiences.