Caroline Thirkill Attends New Teacher Retreat
Caroline Thirkill, Upper School world language instructor, attended the NH New Teachers Retreat held in July at Keene State College. The New Teachers Retreat is an organization dedicated to the development and retention of young talent in the teaching profession. The annual retreat is an opportunity for new teachers (first 5 years) to gain perspective, knowledge, and skills from a community of other teachers in order to improve their practice. It also provides an opportunity for participants to share “open and honest conversation” about the challenges new teachers have and will face. Sixteen teachers, from a mixture of public and private schools, attended the 2022 retreat.
The retreat, which consisted of ten modules, took place over three days. Daily instructional sessions were interspersed with personal and collective planning/collaboration time, as well as opportunities for rest, recreation, and reflection. The sessions included: classroom management, lesson planning, parent & community engagement, and work/life balance. Aside from practical knowledge taught by teachers with many years of experience in the classroom, the retreat “offers a chance to leave regular daily life behind to debrief the previous school year and rejuvenate for the coming one.”
Thirkill, who has taught at Derryfield for two years, said, "I selected this professional development opportunity because I wanted to deepen my understanding of the teaching profession. Since my previous work experience was not in the field of education, I was seeking to broaden both my knowledge base and my network. Connecting with other new teaching professionals, as well as meeting teaching mentors, are two of the primary goals of The New Teachers Retreat."
Located in Manchester, NH, The Derryfield School is a private day school for grades 6-12. Students benefit from a challenging academic program, fine and performing arts, competitive athletics, and a wide selection of extracurricular activities.