5 Ways to Enhance Your Teaching Over the Summer

As teachers, you never stop working. Even on your "summer off" you will be toiling away, strategizing new classroom management techniques, shopping for new classroom manipulatives, and outlining new lessons to enhance your students' learning. Here are 5 ways you may have not considered spending your summer that will improve your teaching for the upcoming school year (now if we could only use these to earn CEs)

If you don't already have a workout regimen, summer is a great time to start one. Even a simple plan to walk every day after dinner with the family is a step in the right direction (ha!). Or, if you are already a pretty active person, keep it up! Not only is physical activity good for your body, but also your mind. Use your fitness time to help destress and feel good (and replenish after a draining school year!). By the start of school, you will likely have more energy, more spunk, and feel renewed to take on the school year!

Whether you are on vacation with your family, or putzing around your neighborhood, get out and get exploring! Take pictures, considering making a video presentation for you kiddos when you return (bonus points if you connect it to a history or science unit!), create a new lesson devoted to the things you've discovered. Going to Italy this summer? Take pictures of the amazing sights and share them with your kiddos when you return from break! Staying local? Explore areas within your district that you could take your students to connected to their learning targets, like a local museum or nature preserve. By getting out there and exploring, not only will you find ways to connect your experiences to your learners, but you will get to experience new, wonderful discoveries!

As if you aren't already! You're a devoted teacher, devoted spouse, devoted caregiver, and devoted friend. But now that you have (a little) extra time, you can really devote your time to being there with your friends and family. Even if you are working on your classroom over the summer, you don't have to split as much of your time between work and your loved ones. Take the time over the summer to soak up a bit more family love than usual. Not only does this feel good for us and our families, but makes us a more compassionate and devoted teacher when the school year kicks up again.

You finally have some downtime (sorta)! Now you can begin to create all those things you wanted to during the year, but had no time to do. Have a great idea for a new science lesson? Take some time to create your plan, take some pictures, test it out with your kids at home. What about your collection of original lesson plans you've already created? Make them into unit! Do you have a ton of work baskets  that you need to organize? Now's your chance to create an organization system that works of you. By starting some of these creative endeavors on your "down time" (ha!) you will be able to devote more time to your students' learning (rather than developing organization systems and updating old lesson plans).

You might also like: Classroom Management

Selfish in a self-love sort of way. One of my top recommendations for teachers and professionals is to indulge in some self-care. How can you possibly take care of everyone else if you can't even take care of yourself. Have you ever worked on 3 hours of sleep? It's terrible, don't try it. But take a second to imagine how much your teaching would suffer if this were the case. Ensuring you clock quality sleep each night is self-care. Making sure you are maintaining an active, healthy lifestyle (see tip #1) is self-care. Making sure you are spending time with people whom you love and support, and love and support you in return (see tip # 3) is self-care. Getting selfish isn't just for you, it's for everyone around you. And once you learn to love yourself, your teaching and devotion to others will only improve. 

ABA at Play: scientific research, antecedent manipulations, motivating operations, automatically-maintained behaviors, evidence-based practices, socially significant behavior, reinforcement procedures

What are some ways you refuel over the summer that enhance your teaching? Share below!


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