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Summer ... We're Supposed to Have Time Off?

DSC_0001.JPGAs July is nearing its end, I'm wondering when the unicorn of free time and relaxation will appear.

I mean, we all know that teachers have it easy because they get summers off, so I'm curious to know who those teachers are.

Every dedicated educator I know spends a good portion of his/her summer, time AWAY from school, improving his/her practice, and preparing for the upcoming school year.

Whether catching up on reading, starting a blog, or attending conferences, most teachers and administrators spend their downtime trying to develop themselves for better student outcomes in their school time.

Leading by example is a huge part of what we do. We expect students to have a habit of spending time reading and writing, why shouldn't we? 

Although we should all make time to have fun (during the school year as well), experiences can produce some of the best learning and kids should know that learning doesn't ONLY happen inside of school, but rather it is all around us; we must capitalize on it.

So far this summer I have traveled coast to coast to learn, gaining insight about my new role at school. I have networked with some of the most amazing minds in education and I have been writing up a storm and the hurricane of storms is coming.

This is my favorite time to tinker with new ideas and flesh out the possibilities of the classroom learning for next year. I download apps and imagine how I can increase student learning by bringing in these new tools. Then I start the line of questioning:

  • Where do they fit?
  • Who can they help?
  • Should they all use them?
  • How will we use them?
  • Does the curriculum need to be adjusted?
  • How can I use feedback to change what wasn't the best?

For those of you not in education, please don't ever tell a teacher they are lucky for time off or short days. Despite time spent in the school building, we spend the rest of our lives communicating and planning to mold the minds of the future. That takes time, a lot of it.

How do you spend your "down" time? Please share.

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