I don’t think I’ve ever hesitated to welcome summer as much as this year. I just spent a few free moments reviewing class lists and thinking about next year and how much I love my students and look forward to seeing them in new classes and glanced out the window at some 2nd graders lining up from their recess. I’m not ready to be finished yet.
This is a weird spot to be in. I readily admit that some students and classes aren’t as easy to teach. Sometimes they’re not nice to each other or to me, and that’s usually part of why the break sounds like such a good idea. But this time I’ve crossed into some new territory where I just stinking love these kids and suspect I’ll feel a gap without them. We aren’t done making magic in the music room, you know?
I think I’m also crossing into a less introverted stage of life as well. Although I love my home, the idea of bumming around home all summer isn’t as novel as it has been. I suppose last year I was still reveling in the lack of grad school classes (a truly liberating feeling), but this year it’s a little less exciting. I’ll still pack my summer with projects, exercise, sleeping in, and time with people, but I’m not really holding my breath for it.
Before you think I’m an amazing teacher or not telling you the whole story, I should probably add that my body is responding as it usually does to the end of the year. I’m extra lethargic in the morning and most of my self-discipline to get up and going early in the morning is hard to come by. That means I’m also kind of grumbly about getting out the door, but once I’m at school, I’m good. Packing lunches, choosing an outfit, getting ready–not fun. School, much better!
Have a lovely, finally sunny day!
I recently read a blog post by a music teacher who pointed out that some of our count-downs in education are sending the wrong message to students and community. It had never occurred to me that my shared excitement for an upcoming break (or weekend, I’ll admit) might communicate to my students that there are a bunch of places I would rather be than school.
If I’m honest, there are days where that IS the truth–that I’d rather be somewhere else (this morning my usual reading with coffee was very brief and full of yawns because I couldn’t get out of bed. A day or morning at home to soak in and enjoy it would have been enjoyed more than the rush to leave that followed). I love what I do, I love my students and want them to know that I have chosen to be here.
This year, for the first time in my teaching career (I’m coming up on 7 years. 7. What?) I am wishing summer was another month off instead of about 2 weeks riddled with interruptions. Between a late program and a student teacher (who was awesome!) I haven’t gotten everything on my list checked off for teaching students (concept-wise). I’m throwing stuff at them in a way I know is not going to serve them in the long run. Maybe I should pull the plug on the new stuff and reiterate the old stuff well in my last class or two. That might not be a bad idea, actually.
One thing I do appreciate about count-downs is the anticipation they build into something upcoming. Maybe I should count down to the next school year. It’s like the opposite of a traditional teacher count down. Hmm…93 days until teachers report back to school! 100 days until students report back to school!
I’m going to set some goals for the summer work-related and otherwise. And 100 days from now maybe I’ll have some cool things to report!