Did you know that Monday, December 18th was the most stressful day of the holiday season?(Survey by Groupon)
I loved being in the classroom during the holiday season, yes the students were overly excited and classroom management became a bit more difficult, but who doesn’t feed off of their emotions? Their excitement resonates the air extending the holiday season and bringing joy to our lives each day…that in itself is a holiday present!!
Yes, it can be very difficult to manage getting ready to celebrate the holidays at home while maintaining consistency and integrity of your curriculum. Not to mention the cost the holidays can bring adds some stress. But with the holidays comes a new year and with a new year comes new year’s resolutions!
Honestly, I am not a big fan of new year’s resolutions, I don’t need a new year to remind me of things I need to be doing better or more/less of (hahaha) However, I love the idea of a fresh start and a new beginning. As a classroom teacher I loved having two weeks off to rejuvenate, get caught up on grading, and rearrange/clean my classroom. When I would go back in January to teach again it was almost like the start of a new school year!
I always felt so lucky that two times a year I was given time to start fresh and rejuvenate myself (physically, mentally, and emotionally). Come the second week in January I felt ready to tackle anything thrown my way! One thing I always tried to do in January was set a new professional learning goal for myself.
I spend all summer researching, learning, and planning. Then, I work diligently August-December to implement what I learned over the summer making tweaks and changes as I went along reflecting on what was working and what wasn’t. By January things in my classroom were always running pretty smoothly which gave me time to start thinking about the next school year!
- What one specific aspect of my teaching would I like to modify or enhance the next year?
- Is there something I could be doing more efficiently?
- What are my students and data telling/showing me that is an area of weakness in my teaching practices?
These are the questions I would start mulling around in my head; by February I had one specific focus for professional learning for the next school year.
Although not in the classroom currently, I have not stopped this practice. I spent August-December learning the ins and outs of my new job, building rapport, creating this blog, offering more online professional learning opportunities, etc. Now as I enter into the new year I have set new goals and focuses for the months to come.
So here we go…part of ensuring goal come to fruition and seeking other’s knowledge as resources involves communicating missions and new ambitions with others. Therefore, I am here to announce that in the beginning of 2018 I would like to create an online book club for educators to participate in! I am excited about this endeavor and have some great ideas but if you have suggestions and/or if you have ever participated in an online book club I would love to hear your thoughts!
Finally, while the holidays are not about giving and receiving gifts, it is often nice to inherit a little something special for yourself. As I am in the holiday mood, I think it is time I do another giveaway: the first 5 people to comment on this blog and state your professional learning goal and/or focus for the upcoming year will receive a special something from the Kane County Regional Office of Education. Please be sure to include your name and email in your post so I can contact you as the lucky recipient of the holiday surprise!
Good luck – I can’t wait to hear all the professional learning taking place!