During my first official week of summer, I thought I would link up with Linda over at Floating Down the River to give some tips on making your next school year easier. These are just some quick tips so next year can start as stress-free as possible. Here are my top 3!
1. Organize your thoughts and reflections from this year.
I have an email folder labeled 2016-2017 school year and I have been sending myself emails about what I need to purchase next year, what concepts I got to, which concepts I didn't get to, ideas for next year and any other important info. Then in the fall, this will be the folder where I save all my lesson plans (I like to email them to myself so I always have access- even if I am kicked out of my room for bad weather). I have tried computer folders and other ways of organizing these thoughts, but I have found that an email folder works best for me because then I am not searching next school year for what I called the folder and everything is right there and accessible from anywhere.
2. Get your craft and reading on!
I love to spend time in the summer making manipulatives, going though recently purchased/ acquired song books and reading professional development materials- especially if I can't take any classes or do many workshops. Making manipulatives is fun for me, so it doesn't feel like work and then at the beginning of the year I am already set and organized. On the list for this year are Symbols Football materials, Popsicle stick games (matching solfa/ rhythms and other games), and more. I am on the lookout for great books to read so send me your favorites- especially on classroom management!
3. Take time off!
I try give myself much needed time to relax and spend time with family before thinking too much about next year. The first week of summer I spend doing easy things that will make the beginning of the year easier- like noting where we left off, making 5th and 6th grade schedule groups (they are grouped by Band/ Orch/ or no instrument), and noting what will need to buy right away in the fall. After that week, I don't like to do much school work at all unless it's fun (see #2). Then in August I am back adjusting my year plans and songs lists, making retrievals for new songs, etc. This summer I am especially excited to spend time with HENRY- he is now 6 months and starting to crawl. We are going to hike, play in the water (maybe- he HATES it right now), go the park and classes at local play gyms and more! Yay for family time!
|Me and the Family at the Butterfly Exhibit|