Cat Travel Tips

Traveling with cats can be a stressful experience, mostly because cats do not take easily to traveling. They would be much happier remaining at home, and having a pet sitter, neighbor, or friend to look after them. There are times when you can’t find a reliable pet sitter, and have no choice but to take your cat along for the trip. With the right preparations, however, and these cat travel tips, you can keep your cat happy and healthy.Whenever you go on some type of journey with your cat, you will need to bring a cat carrier. The cat can be prepared for the carrier before the trip by leaving the carrier out with the flap open. Give the cat incentive to explore the carrier by placing a treat inside, or its favorite toy. Praise the cat if it enters the carrier on its own and when it is time to travel, it will have no problem staying inside.If you are traveling by car, ask the vet for medication that can be used to prevent this or to treat it once it happens. Don’t feed a cat sooner than three hours before departing on your journey and remember to bring a supply of food and water. Also, remember to bring paper towels and a garbage bag, in case you need to clean the carrier.Ensure good ventilation in the car before departing, especially if it is an exceptionally hot day. Remember to never leave your cat alone in the car, even on a mildly hot day, because heat builds up inside a closed car. Heat stroke is a very dangerous condition that can happen very quickly in a parked car.When traveling by plane, make sure the airline you’re traveling with allows cats to stay with you. If your airline does allow the cat to stay with you, make sure it has room to move around in its carrier. If the cat has to be carried as cargo, so you will need a crate that meets the specifications of the airline you’re traveling with. It is best to put some familiar items in the crate with your pet because this experience can be a bit traumatic for them the first time around.These cat travel tips should make your next travel experience less stressful for both you and your feline. Just remember to take the proper precautions with your cat’s health and to make sure the cat’s trip is a comfortable one. With the proper preparations, you can turn what would have been a troublesome trip into a relatively stress free experience.

Live a Healthy Lifestyle Easily

Good health is the gift of God. In this busy life, it is very difficult to maintain a good and healthy lifestyle. Which is the core of attaining the good health. There are a few things that can make your lifestyle a healthier lifestyle, hence helping you to get a good health. These include:

Diet / Nutrition

The very first and the most important thing in maintaining a good health is your diet. In general, dieting is considered as the eating of some specified foods. If you are not maintaining your diet no matter what exercise you do or what sport you play, you can’t have good health. Diet not only includes healthy eating but keeping it regular and having your meals at a specific time is an essential part of dieting and good nutrition.

Good nutrition includes intake of enough calories required by the body. This can be done by maintaining a moderate amount of essentials like proteins, carbohydrates, fats and liquid calories as well. Water plays a very important role in maintaining your shape (shape of your body). Besides that, water helps in cleansing your skin as well. Depending on the weather a normal human body requires at least 8 glasses of water. This required amount increases in the area where it is hotter.


Along with nutrition, sleep is also very important to have a good health. Good sleep can benefit your mind, heart, weight etc. It is the part of a good and healthier lifestyle which many of us ignore. If you are not having a good sleep you can face many issues like the disturbance in mood, having dark circle around your eyes (under-eye circles). It is highly recommended to have 6-8 hours’ sleep during 24 hours of the day.

A good sleep can be helpful in:

  • Maintaining good weight.
  • Having sharp attention.
  • Improving your memory.
  • Low stress


Exercise is also an essential part of your healthy lifestyle. Exercise helps you a lot in maintaining your weight, keeping your body in shape. Exercise includes playing any game which includes physical activity. The best exercise anyone can do is the morning walk or jogging / running in the morning. Going to the gym for muscle building can help you get six pack abs. Regular exercise can help you strengthen your body to fight against different diseases.

At the end we can say that good eating habits, having enough sleep and regular exercise collectively lead to a healthier lifestyle.

How To Select A Theme And Style For Your Marketing Video

Online videos come in hundreds of various styles. Some work better than the others depending on the goal you want to achieve. Naïve marketers who are new to online video marketing must take time, consider the purpose of their online campaign and the product and service they are promoting to decide the style that will work best for their purposes.

Online marketers can create any of the following common styles of videos depending on type of their business and the purpose they want to achieve through their video marketing campaign. These common styles are:

• Testimonials

Testimonial videos are one of the powerful forces for marketing products, such as health products, personal care products, etc. The success of a testimonial video lies in the fact that it develops trust as the viewer believes the person giving the testimony. The positive comments of that person about your product carry far more weight than whatever you might say about yourself. Testimonial videos can work best if they carry real people sharing their experience of your product or services. It is better to shoot real people instead of paid actors, as it will look more reliable and trustworthy source.

• Humor

Humor videos are one of the most popular forms of online videos and can be used to gain popularity. However these videos can just serve general marketing purposes. Also it is essential for the marketer to remember that the purpose of the video is not only to create laughter instead the purpose is to promote the product or service. Sometimes humorous videos gain enormous publicity but the underlying question to consider is whether they drive traffic to the website to promote sales!

• Demonstration

If you really want to trigger sell of the product online, demonstration videos are the powerful source, especially, if your product is novice and complex to use to your target audience. If your product or service cannot be easily and clearly demonstrated for potential customers, it is really difficult to get sales. Demonstration videos are effective to enhance your online sales; this is the reason why internet is full of online marketing videos with product demonstration which serve as a powerful product guide.

• Feature short Films

Creative marketers can even take things a bit further, filming entire films (usually short films) to promote their brands. Famous automobile company BMW shot a series of short films to promote their brand. This is a perfect example of how using short film videos online can grab viewers and pull them in.

• Inspirational

Inspiration videos usually are targeted to trigger human emotions. Non-profit organizations appealing to generate donations can use online inspirational videos that serve best this purpose. Also various companies can develop these videos to foster charity generation as part of their special campaign in the time of some natural disaster for example a flood or a hurricane. These inspirational videos will not only work best to pursue their viewers to raise for the noble cause but also develop long term positive image about the company promoting it.

• Interview

Interview videos are also one of the most popular videos used by online marketers. The success of text-based interviews in marketing gave birth to the new layer of detail in a video interview, where you can see the person’s facial expressions and posture instead of just their words. Online marketers can either interview some experts that can promote the products indirectly for example pharmaceutical companies can post video interviews of doctors or even an interview of the company CEO can be posted to promote the business.

• Shock Videos

Some videos are created only to shock people. Shocking videos have a tendency to go viral just like humor videos. But again marketers should be well aware of the fact that they might not directly generate web traffic or sales.

• Commercials

Commercial videos are just like TV ads and are also one of the famous forms of online video marketing whose purpose is to advertise. Many marketers simply take an existing television commercial and place it online.

• Informative or instructive Videos

Videos aiming to educate the public about a particular cause, issue, or topic are usually informational videos. Informational videos are an effective form of marketing for colleges and educational institutions to promote their selves online. Generally informational video style works best to a person or company that is already considered as an expert in their field as most want to search for such information from a trusted and reputable source. It is also essential for marketers to understand that informational videos are not viral in nature and do not serve the purpose of entertainment. Hence marketers should avoid enticing those videos with extra attributes that might affect the reliability of the information and efficiency of your video.

Are these all the possible video style? Of course not! There are numerous other styles through which you can choose from. Also it is essentially important to mention that no one style works best for all. Online marketers should be vigilant to select one or a combination of style that works best to fulfill their purpose, as the type of video you create will help determine your eventual audience, their engagement with the video, and the conversion of that viewer into a customer.

Finding Work With Temp Jobs

Temp jobs are a great way to make money in this economy where few people are hiring. If you are having trouble finding permanent employment then a temp job is the perfect solution. Temp jobs can last any where from a day to several months. Some temp jobs can even become permanent after a period of time. There are several companies that you can go to that will help you find temporary work. You usually have to take a few test so that the agency can find jobs that suit your skills.Working for a company temporarily can be an interesting way to make a living. You get to meet new people and learn new things. Every job you go on is a new experience. Of course just like with anything you may have a few bad experiences but for the most part it can be a lot of fun to work different jobs and work with new people.If you have many different skills then this is the type of work for you. You will work in many different environments where all of your skills will eventually be used. You may work as a file clerk one day and an assistant the next.Most businesses can not afford to have an employee out for even a day of work. When an employee misses a day of work it can cost the company money and they can fall behind on certain projects. This is where temps come in handy.Some companies will hire temporary employees if they get backed up on a project so that they can get caught up quickly. If a company has a corporate office coming to check up on their progress some companies may hire temps to help get things in order before the corporate office gets there. Temps jobs can range in pay any where from minimum wage and up.However if you are getting a temp job through a temp agency the agency will take a percentage of your pay for getting you the work. They usually do not take much but this is how they are able to keep their temp business open. When a company calls the temp agency for an employee the temp agency goes through their files and finds the person that has the skills that will best suit the companies needs.It is important that you learn typing skills and how to work most computer programs if you are going to work for a temp agency. The more skills you have the easier it is for the agency to place you in a job.However you do have to understand that just because you have the skills does not mean you will have work every day. Some days you may not have any work and other days you may have more work than you can handle. For the most part if you have many different skills a temp agency can keep you in enough work so that you do not have to be unemployed.

Reducing Stress For Health and Fitness Success

The new lifestyle that we all lead today can be both a bane and boon to our health and fitness. With the technologies that we have available now, it seems that work follows us everywhere. It seems we sometimes find ourselves unable to even lift ourselves out of our computer chairs. It is becoming more and more common that people wake up and realize how sedentary and stress-filled their lives have become. This is a good thing. As I teach my health club clients, reducing stress and increasing physical activity and the most important things we can do to improve our lives and our health.What keeps us from becoming healthy?
No one can escape the fact that convenience is right at our fingertips; with cars, the computer, internet, and all these remote controls, who can blame us for becoming more and more inactive. It is true that our minds are always stimulated, but while it has become the age of the intelligent and comprehending minds, it has also become a world of physical ineptitude. Let us face it; probably the only things that get real exercise aside from our brains are our hands and fingers. Couple that lack of physical activity with the stress of never-ending deadlines, economic challenges and the constant demands of daily life and you can easily see where we’re headed.With this realization, nobody wonders why the couches of psychologists and psychiatrists are always occupied. The demand for anti-depressants has risen in unbelievable proportions. Everyone is suffering from stress, in one form or another. You get anxious because of the competitiveness of the workplace; you get stressed because of the demands in your household. With all of this pressure we tend to push our own well being into the back of our minds. In effect, we de-prioritize our own bodies. Stress levels soar and sometimes we let it go too far and we suffer from various illnesses that crop up because of it.How do we get our mental and physical fitness back to the top of the ‘To Do’ list?
Enlist the help of friends and family. Make health and fitness a group priority. Consult with a professional, like the team of fitness and nutritional experts that make up our Ontario health clubs. Being healthy and reducing stress in your life means forming healthy habits. Sometimes being part of a fitness group or joining a gym where you have space and time for yourself can be a great advantage. More and more people are realizing the importance of fitness success in the achievement of lifetime goals. After all, what good can it do you if you have a world full of opportunities when you have a body and a psyche that cannot handle it?Getting advice from professionals can be important. Visiting with trainers and nutrition counselors is very beneficial in helping us understand how slowing down and taking time to be in an appropriate diet and exercise program is advantageous in the long run. After then, we need to make ourselves willing and able to put our hearts and minds into this health routine.Stress is a crucial matter that you need to address; when stress and anxiety levels are too high, you will have a difficult time putting work down and setting aside time and space to make room for personal well-being. For instance, you feel too anxious to get the most of an exercise program when you are thinking of how much time you will have left to make dinner or beat a deadline in the office. Or. Sometimes, you cannot even enjoy a meal because all the tasks that you need to finish are running in your mind.How do you deal with this? One answer is to organize your schedule, take control of your time and look for unnecessary things that waste time. Knowing what you have to do and writing it down can help immensely in keeping your life in the right perspective. Creating a schedule that allows you to finish everything on time will allow you to see that you can make time for yourself. If your ‘To Do’ list is out of control try delegating some tasks to work subordinates, team members or family members. But, and this is important, you also have to make room for the unexpected. Acknowledge the fact that you cannot control everything that happens; the world does not revolve around you after all and it will not stop working if you spend a few hours taking care of yourself.

Nature Photography – Technology Or Art?

Nature photography has been around since cameras were invented, but in the past 20 years it has achieved new-found credibility as an art form. Before that, it had been largely relegated to the tourist industry, where second-rate nature photography was mass marketed on postcards and calendars. You certainly would not expect to find nature photography featured in galleries and on the walls of the well-heeled and tasteful.Over the years, postcards and calendars began to improve in quality as nature photographers with real talent entered the industry. High quality posters of whales, wolves, elephants and spectacular landscapes from around the world were suddenly worthy of framing. Finally nature photography galleries began to appear and, more importantly, turn a profit.When I opened my gallery in 1993, many people still felt that you could not make a living selling photography; that people would only buy paintings to hang on their walls. These days, new galleries are opening everywhere; some good, some not so good, and a few that have really hit the big time.All this activity in the world of nature photography has inspired new generations of photographers to look at nature photography as a hobby or possible profession. These new nature photographers grew up in a very different world than the one I come from. Technology that was unimagined back then is now commonplace, and new photographers have more power in their hands than ever before. But what implications does all this technology have for nature photography?Nature photographers must now decide how much they will allow their photography to be influenced by technology. In earlier days, good nature photography required a very simple approach; find a great subject, in the best possible light, and use your skill with a camera to capture what you saw. Today it is quite a different story. A nature photographer can (if they choose) find a decent subject, photograph it in whatever lighting conditions they happen to find, then go home and completely alter the colours, the contrast, and even the detail of the picture. The result can be an image that owes more to the marvels of technology than to the wonders of nature.Each to his own. It is not for me to judge the creative decisions of another photographer. But the question that is in the back of your mind right now deserves to be asked; is this nature photography?Every photographer is entitled to pursue their craft any way they choose. Of course skills with computer software are just as creative as traditional nature photography skills. However, the person who views a photograph deserves to know what they are looking at, especially if that person is a customer prepared to part with their hard-earned money.I know many photographers get quite defensive on this subject. Camera clubs around the world continue to wrestle with the issue of judging natural photos alongside manipulated photos. Some clubs have tried to divide competition into separate categories, only to find people sneaking their digitally altered photos into the unaltered category for equal recognition. Understandably, ‘software photographers’ want their talents to be recognised on the same level as the ‘in-camera photographers’. And so they should, but not in a way that ignores the difference between the two disciplines.This is not an attempt to denigrate the skills of the software photographers. It just seems to me that the viewer, and in particular the paying customer, deserves to know.Increasingly the public is becoming suspicious of good photography. Anything that is outstanding or unusual is now assumed to have been altered or manipulated using computer software. In many cases, it probably has. Unfortunately, this suspicion gives little credit to the traditional photographer (and there are still plenty of us out there) who prefer to do the creative work in the field, before they press the shutter, and reproduce what was captured on the day.You can’t imagine, unless it has happened to you, how frustrating it is to proudly display your best nature photography, only to hear people say ‘These days it’s all done with computers.’For the record, my photography is as traditional as it can be in the digital age. Software is becoming essential to my work, as I go throught the process of scanning thousands of slides from my years of travel. Not to alter a photo, but to balance the colour and contrast to make sure the printed photograph matches the original slide. It is also an enormous benefit to finally be able to restore images that have been scratched or otherwise damaged by age.I recognise that the trend towards using software to enhance and alter photos is not only inevitable, but just as legitimate as old fashioned nature photography. However, I continue to encourage people to learn true camera skills as well, so that the use of software to manipulate images is a creative choice, not a remedy for lack of ability. Thankfully, the demand for my ebooks suggests that there are plenty of people out there who feel the same way.

Home Insurance – The Disadvantage of Under Insured Homes

Your family life and your finances are represented by your valuables asset which your home is one of them. You need to insure your home wisely by avoiding most mistakes done by home owners and apartment renters. Without insurance, the task of repairing your home in case of damage will be difficult to achieve because the building materials would have increased. Search for home insurance plan that has 100% of the estimated replacement cost of your home. You need to avoid some pot holes when searching for plans with 100% estimated replacement cost if you really want to insure your home without stress. Though, they are calculation you need to make if you want to arrive at an accurate or estimated cost.It is wise to insure your home with full replacement value because of future purposes. Your insurer or the insurance company will not be held liable when there is need to rebuild your home. The Insurance Company will pay according to the agreed amount stipulated on the policy. It is right to know that when your home is under insured there is always penalty placed by the insurance companies. The negative impact which under insured homes bring is felt when the home is damaged. For instance you insured your home with $700,000 and the replacement cost is $900,000 this will make the insurer apply a depreciation value to any claim you may file. The reason for this is your inability to provide at least 80% of the new cost (replacement value). If you carefully check this, you will realize that it is wise to get a full insurance for your home unless you are prepared for bankruptcy.To avoid this case, you need to know the replacement value of your house and insure at least 80% of it covered.

Sources to Get Quality Online Leads for Automotive Dealers

Are you still placing ads in newspapers or billboards and waiting for people to show up at your dealership? Do you have a nice website but are unable to get quality leads? Is your competitor grabbing all the prospective buyers in your market? Then it is the time to rethink on your marketing strategy.We all know that there are a limited number of potential car buyers in the market. Now the question is, how do you direct these potential car buyers to your dealership? Though consumers like to physically inspect a car before purchasing, it is the Internet they approach first in their car buying process. Needless to say is how dramatically the Internet has changed the car buying process – almost 90 percent of consumers use the Internet to research vehicles (source: ‘Capgemini Cars Online Study 2009/2010′). The survey also states that many consumers today are starting their research on vehicles with search engines, then moving to manufacturer and dealer sites.So, it is very important for the auto dealers to have a solid internet marketing strategy; which includes automotive SEO, PPC, Email campaigns and automotive social media marketing media to get quality online leads and stay ahead of their competitors. A well planned internet marketing strategy enables you to access a wide number of potential customers, which then translates in to huge sales.Simply put, investing in the website design is not enough. Proper care and nurturing its performance should be the top priority of an automotive dealer. It is very important to make sure that your website is ranking on the first page of all the major search engines in order to get highly qualified, exclusive leads to your website.Sources to get quality leads
As a smart auto dealer, you should embrace all that the Internet offers. In order to survive, sustain and succeed in today’s competitive environment, you should take advantage of all the tools that are available; such as SEO, PPC advertising, e-mail campaigns, and an aggressive social media marketing strategy.SEO
Automotive SEO is one of the major sources, which provides quality online leads for your dealership. A solid automotive SEO strategy lists your website among the top rankings for all your keywords. Ranking on the first page of the search engines makes your website credible, which in turn provides more traffic, more quality leads and eventually more sales. Proper optimization of home and inside pages brings up all the content related to services and products you offer – making it easy for the customers to know about your services.PPC
Pay Per Click advertising involves purchasing sponsored links on the top of page of a search engines. These campaigns can generate instant sales to your dealership if used within the right context. PPC attracts highly targeted traffic to your dealership based on the keywords you have selected. An important aspect of a PPC campaign is that they can be launched quickly, which ensures that you get quality leads in no time.Email campaigns
E-mail marketing is one of the most effective marketing methods that generate quality leads. Email campaigns increase sales, downloads, inquiries, registrations and overall sales. Through email campaigns, dealers can contact potential customers on a regular basis, increase customer loyalty by sending newsletters or other information related to products or services they offer. Through email marketing, dealers can target large number of customers with minimal budgets. In short, it is a cost effective, highly responsive and opportunistic medium to generate quality leads.Social media marketing
Millions of people are using social platforms like Twitter and Facebook on a daily basis nowadays. It is one of the latest and the fast growing marketing base today. High-quality social media content can raise brand awareness and consideration levels. It can also change customer perceptions of a brand. Social media marketing improves your dealership’s reputation online and thus provides quality leads.Automotive dealers can get quality online leads using Search Engine Optimization along with the other three campaigns mentioned above. But even today, many auto dealers are still not embracing these highly effective marketing campaigns because they either fail to understand them or they think that it is time consuming and difficult to implement. If you are one from them, it is very important for you to approach a reputed internet marketing firm that specializes in helping automotive dealers, to get quality leads that result in sales opportunities.

4 Strategies to Become a Transformative Educator

When you are assigned a class and students arrive, do you view yourself as a teacher, instructor, or educator? Is your role a function, one which completes tasks and responsibilities, or do you aspire to accomplish more with your students? Do you consider the instructional strategies you use now to be transformative in some manner, or would you like to somehow transform the students you teach?A person enters the field of education as a profession, either full-time in a traditional academic institution or as an adjunct (or part time) instructor. A traditional full-time professor may likely be responsible for conducting research, teaching, and publishing scholarly work. An adjunct instructor may teach in a community college, traditional college, or an online school. When someone teaches students within the field of higher education, he or she may be called a facilitator, instructor, or professor. This is important as you won’t find a job title with the word educator in it.Does this mean that everyone who is a teacher, professor, instructor, faculty member, or adjunct, is also an educator? What I have learned through my work in higher education is that everyone who is in one of these roles is doing their best to teach and guide a learning process, whether they are involved in undergraduate or graduate degree courses. However, someone who considers themselves to be an educator is a person who goes beyond the role of teaching and seeks to lead a transformational learning process. I have learned myself that becoming an educator is not an automatic process. It takes time, practice, and dedication to become an engaging and transformative educator.A Basic Definition of a TeacherTeaching is generally associated with traditional, primary education. Classes at this level are teacher-led and children as students are taught what and how to learn. The teacher is the expert and directs the learning process. A teacher is someone highly trained and works to engage the minds of his or her students. This style of teacher-led instruction continues into higher education, specifically traditional college classrooms. The teacher still stands at the front and center of the class delivering information, and students are used to this format because of their experience in primary education. The instructor disseminates knowledge through a lecture, and students will study to pass the required examinations or complete other required learning activities.Within higher education, teachers may be called instructors and they are hired as subject matter experts with advanced content or subject matter expertise. The job requirements usually include holding a specific number of degree hours in the subject being taught. Teachers may also be called professors in traditional universities, and those positions require a terminal degree with additional research requirements. For all of these roles, teaching is meant to signify someone who is guiding the learning process by directing, telling, and instructing students. The instructor or professor is in charge, and the students must comply and follow as directed.Here is something to consider: If this is the essence of teaching, is there a difference between teaching and educating students? Is the role of a teacher the same as that of an educator?Basic Definitions of an EducatorI would like for you to consider some basic definitions to begin with as a means of understanding the role of an educator. The word “education” refers to giving instruction; “educator” refers to the person who provides instruction and is someone skilled in teaching; and “teaching” is aligned with providing explanations. I have expanded upon these definitions so the word “educator” includes someone who is skilled with instruction, possesses highly developed academic skills, and holds both subject matter knowledge, along with knowledge of adult education principles.• Skilled with Instruction: An educator is someone who should be skilled in the art of classroom instruction, knowing what instructional strategies are effective and the areas of facilitation that need further development.An experienced educator develops methods which will bring course materials to life by adding relevant context and prompting students to learn through class discussions and other learning activities. Instruction also includes all of the interactions held with students, including all forms of communication, as every interaction provides an opportunity for teaching.• Highly Developed Academic Skills: An educator must also have strong academic skills and at the top of that list are writing skills. This requires strong attention to detail on the part of the educator must include all forms of messages communicated. The ability to demonstrate strong academic skills is especially important for anyone who is teaching online classes as words represent the instructor.The use of proper formatting guidelines, according to the style prescribed by the school, is also included in the list of critical academic skills. For example, many schools have implemented APA formatting guidelines as the standard for formatting papers and working with sources. An educator cannot adequately guide students and provide meaningful feedback if the writing style has not been mastered.• Strong Knowledge Base: An educator needs to develop a knowledge base consisting of their subject matter expertise, as related to the course or courses they are teaching, along with knowledge of adult education principles. I know of many educators who have the required credit hours on their degree transcripts, yet they may not have extensive experience in the field they teach. This will still allow them to teach the course, provided they take time to read the required textbook or materials, and find methods of applying it to current practices within the field.Many schools hire adjuncts with work experience as the primary criteria, rather than knowledge of adult learning principles. When I have worked with faculty who do have studied adult education theory, they generally acquired it through ongoing professional development. That was my goal when I decided on a major for my doctorate degree, to understand how adults learn so I could transform my role and become an educator.4 Strategies to Become a Transformative EducatorI do not believe many instructors intentionally consider the need to make a transformation from working as an instructor to functioning as an educator. When someone is hired to teach a class, someone other than a traditional college professor, they often learn through practice and time what works well in the classroom. There will likely be classroom audits and recommendations made for ongoing professional development.Gradually the typical instructor will become an educator as they seek out resources to help improve their teaching practices. However, I have worked with many adjunct online instructors who rely upon their subject matter expertise alone and do not believe there is a reason to grow as an educator.For anyone who would like to become an engaging and transformative educator, there are strategies which can be can be implemented.Strategy #1: Transform Through Development of Your Instructional PracticeWhile any educator can learn through time on the job, it is possible to become intentional about this growth. There are numerous online resources, publications, workshops, webinars, and professional groups which will allow you to learn new methods, strategies, and practices. There are also social media websites such as LinkedIn and Twitter which allow for the exchange of ideas and resources within a global community of educators.You can also utilize self-reflection as a means of gauging your effectiveness. I have found that the best time to review my instructional practice occurs immediately after a class has concluded. That is a time when I can assess the strategies I have used and determine if those methods were effective. Even reviewing end of course student surveys may provide insight into the perspective of my students, whether or not every survey submitted was positive. Students tend to submit a survey response either when they are happy or greatly unhappy about the course. Either way, I can learn something about what my students have experienced during the class.Strategy #2: Transform Through Development of Your Academic SkillsI know from my work with online faculty development this is an area of development many educators could use. However, it is often viewed as a low priority until it is noted in classroom audits. If an educator has weak academic writing skills, it will interfere with their ability to provide comprehensive feedback for students.For online instructors, this has an even greater impact when posted messages contain errors with spelling, grammar, and formatting. The development of academic skills can be done through the use of online resources or workshops. Many online schools I have worked for offer faculty workshops and this is a valuable self-development resource.Strategy #3: Transform Through Development of Your Subject Matter ExpertiseEvery educator has subject matter expertise they can draw upon. However, the challenge is keeping this knowledge current as you continue to teach for several years. The best advice I can offer is find resources which allow you to read and learn about current thinking, research, and best practices in your chosen field.This is essential to your instructional practice as students can easily tell whether you appear to be current in your knowledge, or outdated and seemingly out of touch. Even the use of required textbooks or resources does not ensure that you are utilizing the most current information as knowledge evolves quickly in many fields.Strategy #4: Transform Through Development of Your Knowledge of Adult LearningThe last step or strategy I can recommend is to gain knowledge about adult learning theories, principles, and practices. If you are not familiar with the basics there are concepts you can research and includes critical thinking, andragogy, self-directed learning, transformational learning, learning styles, motivation, and cognition.My suggestion is to find and read online sources related to higher education and then find a subject that interests you to research further. I have found the more I read about topics I enjoy, the more I am cultivating my interest in ongoing professional development. What you will likely find is what you learn will have a positive influence on your work as an educator and this will enhance all areas of your instructional practice.Working as an educator, or someone who is highly engaged in the process of helping students learn, starts with a commitment to make this a career rather than a job. I have developed a vision related to how I want to be involved in each class I teach and I recommend the same strategy for you. You may find it useful to develop teaching goals for your career and link your classroom performance to those goals. For example, do you want to complete the required facilitation tasks, or would you rather put in the additional time necessary to create nurturing class conditions?After developing a vision and teaching goals, you can create a professional development plan to prompt your learning and growth in all of the areas I have addressed above. While this strategy may require an investment of time, it is helpful to remember that we always make time for whatever we believe is most important. Being an educator is not sustaining a focus on job functions, rather it is cultivating a love of what you do and learning how to excel for the benefit of your students. Becoming an engaging and transformative educator occurs when you decide teaching students is only part of the learning process, and you work to transform who you are and how you function, while working and interacting with your students.When you transform your teaching or faculty role and become an educator, regardless of your job title, you also transform the learning experience of your students. You provide for them the critical element necessary for real learning to occur, substantive instructor involvement and engagement. More importantly, you humanize the learning experience and you can help to nurture their developmental needs. Students will leave your class transformed in some manner, having learned something they can apply to their academic pursuits, life, and/or career. You will be transformed and so will your students.

Hiring a Bankruptcy Law Firm and Getting Your Value

With the economy variously in shambles or simply mediocre, many people are finding themselves in dire financial straits these days. If you are one of those people, debt could be your biggest concern. When it accumulates, it tends to hang over an individual’s head like a dark storm cloud waiting to burst. There are a few ways to escape that cloud, however, and one of them is hiring a good bankruptcy law firm to take on your case. Not all such firms are created equal, however, so you need to be careful when making your final decision. Here is the key to getting the most value from your lawyers.It isn’t hard to imagine that money is definitely an object for most people when they talk about hiring a bankruptcy law firm. If money was no object, then they wouldn’t be in the situation to begin with. Therefore, it only stands to reason that many people will choose an attorney based on price alone. This could be a major mistake, however. The way filing and other legal activities are done in this arena means certain fees and payments are nearly unavoidable.Most lawyers should be in the same ballpark when it comes to how much they are charging their clients. If you find one that is charging a drastically reduced fee from the competition, something is probably wrong. Either you are going to wind up paying that gap in money at some point down the road or you will not be getting the value you deserve. It is not uncommon to find unscrupulous people in every profession, and unfortunately some choose to put their Juris Doctorates to bad use by misleading or preying on people who are inexperienced with the law. Do your homework and avoid these unsavory characters whenever possible.So what is it that you should be getting from your bankruptcy law firm? In many area of life, that is a difficult question to answer. In this arena, however, it is a relatively simple one. All lawyers should be offering nearly the same package when they agree to take on your case. That package includes a full financial consultation, at which time they will analyze your financial situation and determine the best course of action. It should include preparing and filing the petition with the appropriate federal court. It should include being present at a meeting of the creditors and making any follow up appointments as necessary. If you are getting all of this for a standard price, you know you are getting good value from your attorneys.Keep in mind that every situation is different. Your situation might call for additional representation beyond that basic package. For instance, if you see litigation in your future, it is clearly going to cost quite a bit more than that initial fee. And if you do foresee this kind of proceeding, you’ll want to find a bankruptcy law firm that is experienced enough to go to battle for you in the trial arena.