The end of year is approaching and all the season madness is let loose. But this is a very important moment for you to press pause and reflect upon what you have accomplished this past year and what you expect and intend to accomplish this coming year.

The purpose of a self-assessment is to allow yourself to reflect on your practice, identifying your own professional strengths and areas of development.

Five questions to ask yourself in order to assess your school year

What did I do for my professional growth?

It is very easy to be wrapped up in the school routine and forget about our own professional development. However, we need to keep in mind that continuing our education is extremely valuable and important if we want to go places in our careers. It is important to focus on the aspects you would like to improve right in the beginning of the year, and then have a clear plan on how you are going to accomplish your goals.

We tend to focus on what our students need to work on and tell them to reflect upon their strengths but forget that we too need to invest in our professional growth to be able to motivate our students and get updated with what is going on in the educational world. What did you do this past year that enhanced your practice? How were your classes different because of the different approach you brought into them? What courses or readings do you intend to do next year? Make a monthy list or a to do list for the coming year. What are you going to do for your professional growth?

What was the most challenging aspect of this year?

Your biggest challenges will most likely teach you important lessons for this coming year. It is good to analyze them and evaluate the points you handled well and the ones you will need more help with next year. Think about all the aspects that are part of your daily practice: were you able to plan your classes? Were you able to manage your time? Was it a challenge to keep up with the schedule? Think back at the challenging moments and already prepare an action plan for the coming year.

Which of my students taught me the most?

Every year we have students who change something in the way we conduct our practice. Asking yourself what you have learned from your most difficult students, as well as with the best ones, will sure help you reflect upon your own teaching, and how well you adapt to different profiles.

What grade would I give to my workplace this past year?

Assess your workplace and make sure this is where you want to be next year. Do they give you the support you need? Are there any suggestions you can give to improve not only your work but the work of your colleagues too? Although there is no such thing as a perfect school, you can help make the place you work better, or decide to go on a different direction if that is the case.

Did I fulfill all my expectations for this year?

Look back at the goals you had for this year. Have they all been fulfilled? How hard did you work to accomplish them? What will you need to do to make them happen again next year?

It is very important to look back at the things you intended to do and see that you were able to accomplish them. If you did not, why not? What were the challenges that prevented you from your intentions? If you you did, what helped you?

“The fact is, once you set your intention, your determination in a specific direction, you start to notice options and choices that you never considered before. You begin to recall connections that can serve your current interests that you have otherwise forgotten. You initiate behaviors that you may have previously considered too pushy or needy, and now they seem totally appropriate to what you are going after. Now you begin connecting with people and opportunities that might never before have seemed relevant.”
(Judith Sherven)

Think back and think forward. Fill out the chart below and, based on the answers to the questions above, make plans for the coming year.

My strengths Areas to develop