Like many of you, I finished up what arguably is one of the most challenging and chaotic years of teaching. I started teaching in 1986, and I have worked in education for thirty-five years. First as a teacher (24 years), then a director of technology (2 years), an author and consultant (7 years - and still doing that), and then back in the classroom again (2 years and counting). And I don’t see myself leaving the classroom again unless it is to retire.
As I survey my empty room with the chairs up, I see it as the natural progression to what hopefully will be a summer of regeneration, reflection, and growth.
But this school year has not been like any other. For many of you, this year has taken you to the breaking point. Remote learning followed by more remote learning followed by hybrid learning, and for some of us, it led to primarily in-person learning again.
So if you made it through this school year, I congratulate you. You made it! And you all deserve to celebrate the successes that we had this year. At our last faculty meeting this morning, my principal made a great point in stating that this year has been a success. It had many bumps and pivots, but our students learned, we all stayed safe, and we moved the bar for each student.
But what’s next? My type-A personality wants to jump into planning for next year and thinking through how I can adjust my classroom for even better student engagement and connection. But before I do that, I think we all need to disconnect and push the pause button. Life has been coming at us at one thousand miles an hour, and we all need some time to process. Frankly, I’m not very good at that. I have planned a week away in an unplugged environment. At the end of June, my cousin and I will be cycling across Pennsylvania. I will take that time to rejuvenate and reconnect with my why.
So for all of you, I encourage you to find some time in the next few weeks to unplug, recharge, and get rejuvenated.