Summer break for directors like you is certainly well deserved. In fact, even science tells us that relaxing and taking a break is important. But, while relaxing and recharging is critical to your success in the classroom next year, we also know that using the summer to regroup and get ahead has its merits as well. We polled some of our former educators on staff and a few of our customers to see how they make their summer break worthwhile.Get Rested
We know teachers give 100% to their students every day. We also know that for a director, the days are very long and are not limited to Monday through Friday. In fact, unlike many academic teachers, a director’s “summer” is certainly not long. Many are lucky to get a couple of good weeks without work responsibilities, so take advantage of that for strictly personal time.
Also, keep in mind that recharging is deeply personal.
While some may climb a mountain to rejuvenate, others find travel or a staycation the best way to recover from a long semester. Take this time to do what suits you.
Rest is more than binging on Netflix or lying on the beach. We become teachers because we were inspired. In the midst of a hectic school schedule and exhausting hours, it's easy to forget why we choose to spend our days with teenagers.
Sometimes reflecting on why you teach is a powerful way to recharge.
Recall the difference your own teachers made in your life, and realize that you too are making a lasting impact- more than you will probably ever know.
Make use of the extra hours in your days in between resting your mind and body. Taking just a few hours a week to get ahead can make the transition back to school much smoother and less chaotic. Reflect on last year. What improvements can you make? How should you tweak your program to enhance results?
Develop a self-evaluation form to use for goal-setting.
Start setting the calendar for next year. Coordinate with your campus administration, know testing dates and football schedules. Set concert dates and deadlines. Get parents involved. Draft a letter to send to the parents of all your new students that expresses how crucial parent volunteers are for a successful classroom environment.
Summer break is for more than unscrambling our minds, it's a great time to tidy up your classroom. There’s nothing like coming back mid July knowing you have summer band, choir rehearsal or dance practice in a couple weeks and facing an unorganized, messy area. You'd be surprised what you can accomplish in your room with a bit of elbow grease, large trash bags and a can of paint. Read the transformation of the The Fixer-Upper Band Hall for ideas and inspiration.
Of course, planning now, this summer, for your group’s 2019 or even 2020 travel is optimal. This is meant not as a chore, but as a way to mark one more thing off your back to school list.
- Set up your buses for football games and local performance events now.
- Get priority on dates and equipment and fill out necessary trip requests.
- Planning festival performances for the spring? Now's the time to reserve your dates and performance times. Believe it or not, popular spring dates and premier performance venues can fill up by the end of August.
- If you are planning overnight travel, summer is the perfect time to finalize an itinerary and set up a payment schedule for your students.
Enjoy your well deserved summer break, and thank you for the dedication and sacrifice of teaching. We hope you will save part of the summer for yourself, but we know the best teachers will still spend much of it on their students.