Saturday, September 27, 2014

Reflective Teacher Day 27: The weekend role....

     Since I am sitting here drinking coffee, in my sweats with no socks while writing this gives you some idea of what role the weekend/holiday/summer plays in my teaching. It is a time to relax and rest, but you still do work here and there, but it's a relaxed mode. Time to think, to reflect. (Ha!) People who don't teach have a hard time fathoming that there is simply not enough time during the day to get done what needs to get done. With the movement towards blended and on line learning (Which I think is a good thing!) there is going to be a definite shift in how teachers do their work. But I think with all of the tools available, it will make the work easier.
     There is no doubt that the weekend and holidays (even if we include the summer) help me to relax and be with family, enjoy my interests, and not take the day at 48 minutes at a time. My biggest problem sometimes is thinking too much about what I am doing in the classroom and not stepping away for a little bit to not think and allow the sub-conscience to process what I am thinking about. So don't think to actually think. It is like the shower phenomenon....most people will tell you they do their best thinking in the shower where they are not really trying to think. Just lather, rinse, repeat.
     I think it is important, especially for new teachers, to make sure to set aside time for yourself. Teaching is one profession I think that can be all consuming where you lose yourself in what you are doing. Little things here and there can help you to avoid burnout. Don't forget yourself and the things you like to do that are not school related: treat yourself to a dinner out; go see a movie; meet with friends and family; go for a walk; listen to the music you like; read for pleasure!! I always thought that reading for pleasure during the school year was too hard to do given the amount I have to read for school. But, it really is something that is quite helpful. I love to read and this type of reading takes your mind off of thinking too much about the other reading you have to do.
     The weekends and holidays truly help to make for better teaching. One of the untaught aspects of teacher training is helping new teachers to still have a little bit of their lives that doesn't disappear when they step into the classroom. Most, if not all, teachers go into the profession to help others, to make a contribution to the future of this great nation. However, it can be easy to get lost in that. I would say to new or potentially new teachers to save some time for you! You can still make a great impact and keep yourself you!  

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