EP01, EP02, EP03: It’s FINALLY time to share the launch of my weekly podcast with you! If you’re new to podcasts, they’re essentially a talk radio show which you can listen to online or download to take with you wherever you go.
I hope to use this podcast to speak encouragement and truth into your life, and get you energized for the week ahead. There are 3 episodes ready for you to listen to right now!
You can hear a brand new 10 minute podcast every Sunday. Or, check out the blog on Monday morning to get the same content in writing. Whichever option you choose, I hope that Angela Watson’s Truth for Teachers will help you begin every week feeling inspired and motivated.
To get new podcast episodes as they’re released each Sunday, you can subscribe to Angela Watson’s Truth for Teachers in iTunes. You’ll be able to play the recording on your computer, tablet, or smart phone whenever it’s convenient for you. I’ve already released three episodes so you can start digging in right away.
I enjoy listening to podcasts while I’m driving, exercising, cooking, and cleaning. I think podcasts are a great way to fill your mind with positive messages while doing otherwise mundane tasks. They’re a wonderful way to learn new ideas and connect with interesting people outside your own community without having to spend more time staring at a screen.
The text below is based on the podcast’s transcript, and will share more about how I hope I can help you through this new venture.
If you’re new to me and my work, let me share a little bit about who I am and why I decided to start a podcast called Angela Watson’s Truth for Teachers. I was a classroom teacher in Title 1 schools for 11 years. My first five years, I taught just outside of Washington D.C, and then I taught in the inner city of Miami, and later in downtown Fort Lauderdale. I started off teaching HeadStart, which is a prekindergarten program for children from low-income families, and then I taught 2nd and 3rd grades.
I began a website for teachers back toward the beginning of my career, in 2003. Back then there really wasn’t any such thing as a blog, and teachers were just starting to get access to digital cameras to take pictures of their classrooms and share them on message board forums. I really enjoyed sharing the practical ideas that were working in my classroom, and I taught myself HTML so I could build out a website from scratch and give teachers a permanent place to reference all those ideas instead of combing through message board threads. My website is still the foundation of everything I do: social media options have come and gone over the years, and I reach out to teachers in those spaces, too. But my website is the place where I still share what’s working and what’s not.
So, I left the classroom in 2009 when I got married. After the wedding, I had planned on moving from Florida to New York and teaching up there, but the recession hit, and New York was actually laying off teachers at that time. I had to make a choice: I could stay down in Florida teaching and live apart from my husband, or I could move to New York and pursue some work that had been offered to me as an instructional coach.
It was a huge transition, for sure, and definitely scary at first. But at that point, I’d already been mentoring and supporting teachers online for years. I’d published my first book. And I knew I had the opportunity to create change for schools on a much bigger level than if I stayed in the classroom.
Right now I have the best job in the world. The way I define my job as an independent educational consultant is to empower teachers to change students’ lives through passionate, inspired teaching and learning. There are a lot of people out there who are trying to tell teachers how to do their jobs, but very few who have walked a mile in their shoes and are trying to support teachers in making the best decisions for kids.
I think of myself as an advocate for teachers and students, particularly those in urban schools. I want to help you push past all the bureaucratic nonsense that steals the joy from schools so you can make your work more meaningful. That has become my life’s work now: empowering and supporting teachers through coaching and consulting, blogging, writing books for teachers, and creating online courses and curriculum resources.
I wanted to do a podcast because I think there are some messages that are just best received via the spoken word. Some things are more powerful when you hear them, rather than read them.
And many of my blog readers have been reading my words for the whole 11 years I’ve been sharing them online, yet they’ve never heard my voice. Once you’ve heard a person speak and then you read something they’ve written, you’re able to read their words in their own voice. I want my readers to be able to do that, to be able to connect with me on a more personal level.
So, why Truth for Teachers? Because I think right now, teachers need truth more than anything else. Teachers are constantly being told things that are not true, things like: your value is determined by your students’ test scores. They’re told things like: there is one right way to teach, and you’re not doing it. They’re told: your students aren’t meeting standards that are developmentally appropriate because you, the teacher, are not working hard enough. I believe that someone needs to counter lies like these and speak truth into teachers’ lives.
I’m typically known as being a positive and encouraging person. That’s a great reputation to have, and it makes sense. The tone of my blog is generally positive. My book Awakened: Change Your Mindset To Transform Your Teaching is about helping teachers develop a positive, resilient mindset. I run the Encouraging Teachers group on Facebook to provide a positive place for 10,000 teachers to inspire and uplift each each other.
But you know, there’s more to my personality than just being positive and encouraging. I don’t want to be known just for that. I want to be known as a truth teller, as someone who is not afraid to call things like she sees them, and to speak out against the things that are not best for teachers and kids.
I have the privilege of working for myself. I don’t have to cower to a school system. I don’t have to worry about losing my job. I can speak freely and honestly, and I want to do that on behalf of all the educators who cannot.
Some of what I share here on the podcast will be controversial, but most of it is just the truth. It’s the stuff you as an educator know is right and true deep within your being, but maybe you just didn’t have the words to express it. Maybe you thought you were the only one struggling, the only one feeling that way. The Truth for Teachers podcast is about letting you know that you’re not alone, and you’re not the only one who feels like you’re way in over your head sometimes. You’re not the only one who wants desperately to do great things for kids but keeps losing your way in a system that is not set up to support you or them.
A new episode of the weekly Truth for Teachers podcast will be released on iTunes every Sunday to help you get ramped up and motivated for the week ahead. On Monday mornings, I’ll post a link to the podcast as well as a transcript like this one right here on the blog, so if you’re not a person who enjoys listening to audio (or if you want to pass the message on to friends who don’t listen to podcasts), you can read and share via the blog instead.
The podcast will be 10 minutes or less each week: just enough to get you feeling energized and re-centered on your purpose. This is not a guest-centered podcast. Mostly it will be just me, sharing my truth just like I’ve done today, but about once a month, I’ll invite another educator to share his or her truth for teachers, as well.
If you want to support what I’m trying to do here, I would LOVE for you to leave a review for the show on iTunes! (The link will open up iTunes: click on “Ratings and Reviews” and then “Write a Review.”) Podcast reviews are super important–the more reviews we have, the more easily discoverable the show will be, and the more teachers we’ll be able to reach and inspire.
Each week, I’ll leave you with motivational quote for the week ahead that I call the Takeaway Truth. The takeaway truth I want to share this week is really just introducing a phrase that I like so much I’m going to use it to sign off on every podcast. It’s a quote from Art William and this is what it says:I’m not telling you it’s going to be easy, I’m telling you it’s going to be worth it.-Art Williams Click To Tweet
And I can’t think of any profession that this quote holds more true for than teaching. The work you do in the classroom is incredibly challenging but I promise you, your efforts are paying off whether you see the results or not. That is the truth and I want you to believe that.
Thank you for your support with this podcast! Remember, I’ve already released three episodes so you can subscribe and start listening today. Visit iTunes to check them out!