This post is week 7 of 8 in the 8 Weeks of Summer Blog Challenge for educators.
I've been doing the challenge because why not? Mostly I've been answering as my pre-retirement self, but we may mix it up a bit this week. Here's the prompt:
Check-in on where you are in your summer learning journey and your overall professional journey.
When I was still teaching, I was always... somewhere. Every summer I read and I did various projects (because you can't help students learn how to Do Stuff if you have no first hand experience Doing Stuff) and I also operated on the theory that teachers owed their community a certain something in the summer in return for the taxpayer support on which we live. YMMV.
But this week I'm sending you a bulletin from the other side of retirement, because in unlearning some Teacher Things, I've come to better appreciate them. Here are some things I have had to learn.
* Measure out time in increments larger than 30 seconds. It is not necessary to squeeze achievements into every second of the day, particularly when you could be using the time to interact with the other carbon based life forms in your home.
* Eat a meal in more than five minutes.
* Read a book without repeatedly thinking, "I could use this in class for my unit about X."
* Read a book that you couldn't possibly use for class ever.
* Visit an interesting location without grabbing pamphlets for your classroom.
* Moving through your day without a gnawing sense of urgency that there's something you should be grading, reading, planning or reviewing.
* Figuring out what to do with the uncontrollable urge that hits every time you learn something new, which is the urge to pass it on to somebody else.
* Understanding that you might never not be a teacher, and you're going to have to figure out what to do with that.
* Exercise. Because you're not walking ten miles a day any more.
* Face you're unreasonable addiction to office supplies.
* Talk yourself out of running for school board.
* Seriously. You can take fifteen or twenty minutes to eat lunch. Take a breath between bites. Chew your food. Talk to somebody.
* Take your eyes off the clock.