Friday, 24 June 2016

A Teacher's Summer To-Do List

Now that school is out.... what is on your to-do list?  Here are a list of my favourite summer time to-dos!

1. House Cleaning
I know what you are thinking.... the first thing on the list is house cleaning (ugh)!!  Most of this list is not in any specific order BUT... this is actually the first thing I do every summer.  I don't know if you are anything like me, but other than the basics, my housework is pretty much neglected during the school year.  I'm usually in the groove after cleaning out my classroom and keep on going when I get home.  Doing it right away suits me well because it really takes me awhile to be able to relax after the busyness of the school year anyway.  I would just get jittery if I tried to jump right into relaxing.... Plus I like to get it out of the way and be able to enjoy my home for the summer!

2. Pamper Yourself
This means something different to everyone...massage, haircut, spa day etc.  After all that housecleaning I am usually ready for (and need) a mani/pedi.  Even with the best of intentions it can be hard to fit "yourself" into your busy schedule during the school year.

3. Exercise
Keeping up with a regular exercise routine during the school year can be a real challenge. Summer is a great time to take long walks, check out a new class or go bike riding with your kids.  I like to establish a bit of a routine that I will hopefully be able to carry over to the school year.

4. Cook
I have to admit..... I don't really like to cook that much.  But I also like to eat healthy and am usually feeling a little malnourished from eating cereal and take-out during the last weeks of school!  Plus cooking is more fun during the summer when you have time to plan and try new things.  I usually try to find a few new school night recipes that I can add to my repertoire for the fall.

5. Go For Lunch
Hey, you can't cook EVERY meal all summer and there is something liberating for teachers about going out for lunch!  I guess it depends on your teaching assignment and grade level but I eat lunch (or attempt to anyway) in my classroom, with my students, most of the year.   I have to admit this is my least favourite perk?! of the job.  I prefer to eat sitting down, perhaps at an actual adult sized table and even better if someone else is cooking.  In the summer I like to go for lunch with my husband, girlfriends (the ones that have jobs where they can go for lunch all year long), kids (my own kids NOT the kiddos I lunched with all year) or teacher friends.

6. Read
I am one those people that has a slight panic attack if I don't have a book on the go. However, my school year reading routine goes pretty much like this: Read for about 5 mins....fall asleep.  It seriously takes me months to finish a book.  During the summer I can stay up late to finish those last few chapters or spend the day at the beach with a trashy novel.  I try to fit in some professional reading too but I always start with the fun stuff!

7. Netflix
This one is pretty much a no-brainer..... catch up on your shows!! 

8. Spend Time with Friends & Family
This is a little embarrassing...... but my husband says I'm nicer during the summer.  When I take off my teacher hat and have more time just to relax and spend quality time with my family and friends I am truly a happier person.  The struggle of balancing it all is tough and in the summer I don't balance, I just have a chance to focus on being a wife, a mom and a friend.  And apparently be nicer..... 

9. Nap
Remember at the start when I said I have a hard time relaxing at the beginning of the summer.  Well, somewhere at about week 2 or 3 I get REALLY good at it.  I mean, "having a nap every afternoon" good at it!  I can count on one hand the amount of naps I have during the school year but come summer... ZZZzzzz you can hardly keep me awake after lunch.  

10. To Plan, or Not To Plan?!
This is one that I have struggled with through the years.   Some summers I spend a lot of time prepping for the upcoming year and other summers... not so much.   Some summers I have had a rough year and I need the break... the whole break.  Some years I have spent the entire summer prepping just to find out I am changing grades or classrooms. Some years my teacher partner & I have met regularly throughout the summer to plan our program. Some summers I am really into it and others I am not. Sometimes my exact position is pretty much guaranteed for the upcoming year, other times there is the possibility of last minute changes. Some years I can get into my classroom throughout the summer and other years, only a few days before school starts (why do they always clean my carpets last!!).  So I guess planning NEEDS to be on the list but I will keep it down here at number 10..... to be tackled sometime at the end of August!

Enjoy your summer!  Read lots of books, take lots of naps & go out for lunch while you still can.....

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