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How Teachers Can Make a Difference Outside of the Classroom

March 8, 2020

By: Robyn D. Shulman, M.Ed.

If you were born in the 70s, you probably remember long summer days when you ran through the water sprinkler, rode your bike across town, caught a baseball, and stayed out until your parents called you in at dusk. 

We played in the fresh, humid air, scraped our knees, ran miles for the ice cream man, sketched out Hopscotch squares, and splashed in dirty puddles left over from a brief afternoon rain. The short storm always came when you needed it most, and if you were lucky, you'd catch a glimpse of a rainbow.

Those warm summer days running around, having fun, also came with an unspoken side effect: learning. 

 

Making a Difference Outside the Classroom

 

When we played with our friends outside, we learned significant lessons outside of the classroom. We developed grit. We learned how to fail and get up, we picked our battles, we played endless games, and we solved many problems which served us into adulthood.

 

On top of all my special memories, I can still recall one thing I loved to do the most: pretend to teach. Every morning, I brought my teaching toolbox outside for the kids on my block. I can still see my green, flip-over chalkboard (the one with the broken, squeaky wheel), a bin of my cousin's chalk, a few small chairs, and a couple of Little Golden books—and my class was ready to go. 

 

Growing up in a single-parent home, I knew education was my ticket to a better life. In my family, I was the first person to attend college. At the beginning of my university years, I couldn't decide whether to go into journalism or education. I chose to teach because I wanted to work with kids who were like me.

 

I landed my first job in the primary school I had attended. After my first interview with a few former educators, I knew I was home. I taught almost all grade levels and every subject, including ESL and Spanish, and eventually moved into higher education after receiving my M.Ed. 

 

After my work at the college level came to an unexpected halt, I had to find a new path, and I did.

 

An Unexpected Journey

When I left higher education, I had to find a new me. I learned how to code a little bit, built an education website, and began to write—something I had always loved to do. 

I worked for a few different education startups after my education site took off, learned about content marketing, branding, and strategy. I landed a column on Forbes. In 2018, LinkedIn named me their first Top Voice in Education.  

Here I am today—excited about my new journey, and here's what I hope to bring to the table at PRP.

 

A Teacher's Lens

Since I taught for many years, worked in higher education, and remain active in this space, I'm looking forward to bringing my teacher's perspective to the table.  

I know how the public school ecosystem works, the trials universities face today, and I want to bring my years of background knowledge, wisdom, and unique teacher’s lens to PRP. I want to assist education institutions, organizations, or companies with strategy, vision, and growth based on my inside perspective.

 

Marketing Skills

I’ve spent the last eight years learning about marketing. Outside of learning web design and coding, I learned how to implement SEO, and spent endless hours reading books and taking classes about content marketing and strategy.

I've worked with various education startups, and I figured out how to bridge my worlds of teacher and writer. This combination helps me assist education companies in understanding teachers’ needs while assisting them in meeting their goals.

Harnessing the Power of LinkedIn

I have had the privilege to work with LinkedIn in different ways for the past eight years. In 2012, Mr. Jeff Weiner, the CEO of LinkedIn, shared my career story on their blog, and in 2016, the company named me "Someone to Follow" in education. 

I've been running beta tests for them since 2012, which has taught me how to use social media to reach the right audience, garner engagement, and create stories that people want to hear. Due to my success using LinkedIn, I hope to bring my years of knowledge regarding how to best use the platform for success.

 

Power up my social media

 

Most importantly, I'm looking forward to learning from the immense talent at PRP, and supporting everything in the education world that can help teachers in the classroom—because in the end, it’s still about the kids.

 

And, that's the reason I'm here today. I still have my Little Golden books. Do you?

 

Thanks for sharing!

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