There are so many things to do and ways to spend spring break. You know all about all the fun you could have, but do you know how to prepare before so that you can actually unplug completely from school to do all those wonderful, relaxing, adventurous things?
- Plan ahead – we often plan a week at a time because time doesn’t always allow us to get ahead of the game. This month, spend a little extra time with your team, or solo to plan ahead for the week after spring break.
- Gather resources – you’ve made a plan, now gather your materials. While you’re pulling together books, papers, etc., for this week, grab the things you need for after the break. Make copies of handouts, study guides, or worksheets.
- Be smart about graded assignments – the week before spring break isn’t the time to add more assignments that need to be graded immediately. Have students “self-check” assignments when possible. Hopefully, you are already doing this anyway.
- Finish up projects or units – it’s hard enough to transition back after a break, but coming back to old material makes it harder. Starting something fresh helps get everyone back into the swing of things on a positive note.
- Take care of emails – now is the perfect time to clean out that inbox. We get so many emails, some we read right away, and some we put off till later. Take a few minutes a day to manage emails. The day before break, answer emails that need an answer and turn off your computer.
- Tie up loose ends – before you leave for break, take care of anything that might sneak into your head and destroy your good vibes while you’re sitting on the beach or trying to read the novel you’ve been dying to read all year. Clean off your desk and leave everything neat and ready to go when you return. Change out the bulletin board. Straighten up your library or clean stations. Do whatever you need to do that will allow you to have a true vacation from teaching.
- Leave it all at school – you’ve worked hard and you’ve earned this time to recharge. You’ve spent the last few weeks planning, preparing and you are ready! Turn out the lights, close the door and leave everything behind. That means you’re not lugging home a tote full of papers, your computer, or lesson plans, NOTHING goes home with you. If you have a school email set up on your phone, don’t look at it.
Teaching is exhausting! When you are at school, you give your students 100 percent. You’re constantly on the go between school and home responsibilities. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with leaving school behind for a week to focus on yourself and taking a little time to refuel your mind, body, and spirit. Take a REAL break, you’ll be so much better for it.
Teia Hoover Baker is an educator, published author, and entrepreneur. She is an innovative, devoted educator whose career has been dedicated to coordinating programs that support struggling learners. Her passion is meeting students where they are and guiding them to excel. Her main focus is always what is best for children. Teia holds a Bachelor’s in Journalism and a Master’s of Education. In her spare time, she enjoys being Lovie to her growing grandchildren.