Professional development can be a sore spot for some teachers. Many times, the sessions offered on PD days are related to district policies or initiatives. Its not uncommon that these session don’t impact your classroom much, but they still need to be completed from a compliance aspect. PD is more engaging and meaningful when it revolves around a topic that interests you, but there’s never enough time on those to offer these types of sessions. Often times, an educator needs to seek sources for professional development outside of their district or organization. My acronym for that is PDOS (Professional Development Outside of School).
For several years now, I’ve been using Udemy for many aspects of my professional growth. Udemy has over 30,000 online courses related to a variety of topics: Marketing, Health & Diet, Personal Development, etc. The courses are written by instructors who have real world knowledge and experience in each subject area. All of the courses are self paced so you can take them when it fits into your schedule. There’s no time table to complete and you can always re-watch a lesson or two if you don’t understand a topic. Similar to other online course offerings, each course has a community of students driving discussions about the material.
One of the aspects of Udemy that I really like is the number of FREE courses on the site. I’ve taken about 30 free courses over the past few years. Here’s some examples that a typical K-12 teacher might find appealing.
- Coding for Kids – A Guide for Teachers and Parents
- iPad Literacy 101
- All About Minecraft – A Complete Educational Course
While some course are free, the vast majority have a cost associated with them. The pricing is anywhere from $9 all the way to $499. Don’t let the cost be a deterrent though. The site runs sales quite often where they cut the prices on most of the courses to less than $20. Their biggest sale coincides runs the week before Black Friday which is what prompted this post. It’s a fantastic time to get access to really amazing courses for an affordable price.
You can click the banner below to browse their sale. Full transparency: If you purchase a course using the banner below, MoreThanATech.com makes a small profit (like a dollar).