- 5 Ways to Remember your Value this December
For all levels of teachers in every position, whether it is tutoring, homeschooling, secondary education, substituting, or elementary school, December can be just as jammed-packed as the beginning of the school year. Between Christmas performances, Holiday parties, and squeezing in special events, teachers still have to get their curriculum and grading in on top of finishing Christmas shopping and cooking the holiday meal. Here are 5 ways to take a breath, and enjoy the stressful December holiday season.
#1 Acceptance and Attitude– It took a while, but I learned to accept that every December will be this way. Engrave into your mind to look at things with “The Glass is Half Full” attitude. It is so busy and you still have to get your lessons across. Change your vision about the Holidays and accept everything with a positive attitude.
#2 Embrace All Holiday Celebrations– I remember skipping the Christmas party a few years and many of my colleagues that would say, “No, I am not going”. What better way to get effortless smiles then to participate in as much Holiday activities as possible. Join the gift exchange, go to the Holiday party, participate in the Christmas pageant. Have a holiday themed party for your classes and invite their parents and family. There is no other month in which you can embrace the celebrations and renew your soul. Participate!
#3 Get ahead of your Christmas and Holiday obligations. As a teacher, you know great planning is a top 3 necessity to be successful and stress free in this career. DO NOT wait til the last minute to shop, find teaching resources. Set things up to conquer the many upcoming obligations you know you have to do. With that said, grab this December Unit and have all your reading topics covered- nothing combats stress like not having to plan and having your teaching resources ready to go.
#4 Watch your Money! Have you ever been like me and said, “It’s ok” and just blew through your finances during the Holidays? Then you are sitting around on New Year’s Day praying that your first January pay day comes quick! Save money right now on this Freebie Holidays Around the World reading resource. In my 15 years of teaching and unto this day everywhere, I have never met a teacher that was a millionaire after the holidays. I have met many of teachers that were like, “I’m always broke after the holidays”. Find a way to not be like me and many in the past and reject your thoughts of “It’s ok”—- control your expenditures. Do ya really need it?
#5 Remember…You are a Pro! No matter what happens, you are a pro. You have all the training and know how to get through. Whether this is your 1st December or your 30th holiday season, you are valuable, you are loved, you are important. Do not let anyone tell you otherwise including yourself whispering it under your breath in between planning and meetings.
As always, take time for yourself. Do not beat yourself up if you miss something. Do not gripe and put yourself down if you forget even important obligations. You will be fine and will have better mental performance if you let things go and make a mental note to remember from it for next time.
Take a nap, call your mom, take a walk, watch a movie— A healthier teacher is a better teacher. If you have any tips, ways, or opinions please feel free to share. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays everyone.—–
- How to survive teaching this Fall & November:
It took years for me to learn but it does not mean all teachers have to learn that way. With 15 years teaching ESE and many other classes in Middle School, halfway in that time frame it hit me. I accepted my situation. I accepted the fact of who were my principals, grade chair leaders, and team leaders. I accepted my challenging students and parents. I accepted the workload whether I was teaching several classes of social skills, credit retrieval, or math classes. I accepted what was thrown at me and changed my attitude about the situation. After all, I was a pro, I was trained and I knew how to adapt and make the best of the things I could not change. As for the things that were in my power to change, I did. This means after accepting all variables mentally, I worked to be at optimum health. Physically I always “made” time to exercise not “find time”. No matter how tired I was, I would put down the fast food orders and cook healthy meals. And for mental, which is just as important— I learned how to take personal time for myself. Make teaching “absent” from your thoughts sometime during the day and have a life of personal time. Absence makes the heart grow fonder and it is no different when teaching is absent from your thoughts even for a few hours a day. I always say it. Take time for yourself. Take a nap, visit family, call a friend, read a book for fun and not professional development, walk your dog, go shopping. Here are some popular Teacher Mental health books and Tools on Amazon. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Take Time for yourself! Feel free to leave comments or contact me for anything at all especially if you need more help. Appreciate your support and Remember, You are a 24/7 Teacher- J. Harrod
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- Should Teachers Dress up for Halloween?
I remember as a child in kindergarten at Silver Sands Elementary, decades ago. The school not only allowed us to dress, but trick-o-treat in the school. I had probably a 3 dollar “wonder dog” custom with plastic mask. At the time in the 80’s, plastic masks and suits were worn by everyone. We all showed up with our costumes and had a field day. Our teacher Mr. S filled the day with games, songs, and even pumpkin pie making. Before kindergarten got out at noon, we had a complete trick-o-treat walk throughout the whole school receiving bundles of candy from every classroom. To my disappointment, it was only for Kindergartners and never happened again!
As a middle school teacher, we discouraged, with warnings against any student causing a disruption with costumes. However, appropriate shirts and jewelry were fine. As for a male ESE teacher, I would prefer an orange shirt with a black tie.
How do I feel about it? Dressing up as a teacher? If those in charge permit it– DO IT!. Just think, it is something the students will never forget in the way I will always remember Mr. S dressing up as a clown for my only costume days as a student in school.
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Don’t forget your FREE October Unit
Remember, You are a 247 Teacher!
- Will you still be teaching in 2030?
I taught in a computer lab for 3 years for “credit retrieval”. The lab was for middle school students that failed a course for the 9 wks and had to make it up. They sacrificed an elective until they passed the 9 wks with a “D”. The course was ALL online with me helping monitor and even help them “a little bit”. Dozens of students came through the lab. I thought to myself, “Stand and Deliver, Face-to-Face classroom teaching would be obsolete within the next 20 years”.
Later, because of class population issues, students started coming into the computer lab for advancement. Some of the students were completing a whole 9 wks worth of work within ONE WEEK with an “A”! I would have to send them to the media center or give them made up assignments to kinda, hold them back from finishing the whole year. After all, if they can complete a whole 9 wks in one week and pass the End of the Year exam, how long would it take to complete a whole year?
Then Covid hit and I changed my mind. Why? Testing scores, performance skills, mental health, & social skills all declined. Certified Speech Pathologists were reporting a significant delay on speech development (Gov.Article). Every state in the U.S., whether completely, partially, or open had lower gains in all subjects. So now I feel teaching in the classroom will not only be around in 20 years, but be cherished and honored.
Now the new threat is A.I. but in my opinion it won’t take over. You can’t replace the greatest learning for decades with solid scientific evidence, human beings learn better and faster face-to-face, hands on, scenario and solving, in classroom learning. It doesn’t matter where it is- public school, charter/private school, homeschool, or virtual/online learning, I see A.I., technology enhancing education within all these organizations and physical classrooms continuing to grow and thrive. All will excel. What are your opinions?—- J. Harrod
BTW- Read the U.S. government eduction goals for 2030 (Gov.Article)
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