Teaching in 2020: Expect the Unexpected

As I’m reflecting on teaching in 2020, I’m realizing that as much as we may try to control things – other people, our environment, or situations – there is much that is out of our hands.

It is during troubling times that we as educators can pull together and work to make our classrooms a safe space for our students. This is no easy task – it may involve a shift to online learning or being more receptive to different cultures or ideas.

It’s important to remember that teachers are already experts on change. Unexpected situations come up in our classrooms all the time! How many times has technology gone wrong, a planned activity was cancelled, or a new student joined your class without warning? As educators, when there are major or minor bumps in the road, how to we respond? Do we get anxious? Or do we see it as a chance to be creative and innovative?

We’re only half-way though 2020 and there has already been so much upheaval, but I’m confident that educators will continue to teach, bringing their best for their students in a constantly evolving world.

Some food for thought:

  • What are some unexpected situations that you were able to respond to creatively and effectively in your teaching career?
  • How are you planning on incorporating new ideas from teaching in 2020 into your classroom?

In tumultuous times, Professional Learning Board is here for you. Tap into cultural competency or get a free online PD course to learn more teaching online.


Ellen Paxton is the Chief Learning Officer of Professional Learning Board. As a two time National Board Certified Teacher, Ellen has successfully designed and delivered research-based and standards-aligned curriculum to help teachers meet their continuing education requirements. Through ProfessionalLearningBoard.comRenewaTeachingLicense.com, and ConnectedPD.com, Ellen has established and maintained partnerships with several accredited universities, higher education institutions, teachers’ unions and state Departments of Education while overseeing curriculum development, alignment, implementation at the classroom level and strategic direction.