From social media posts, I follow the summers of many teaching friends. Inevitably there are also posts that sometimes subtly (sometimes overtly) attempt to guilt teachers for “so much time off”. This post isn’t going to try to convince people that it really isn’t as much time as they’d like to think. This post is explaining why I want my child’s teachers to savor this time off, why I believe their vacation is in my child’s best interest.
I want my child to have a teacher who…
- Traveled to new places that can bring back into the classroom and share parts of the world (and my state) that my child may never have seen.
- Tried new things so they can remember how important that discovery is for learning.
- Spent some time in nature to boost their mental and physical well-being so they can better appreciate my own child’s well-being.
- Had time with their own families so they can remember and appreciate how vital that is for all families.
- Read lots of books so they can better recommend titles and match books to my child’s (and all readers’) interests and needs.
- Had time to take a class, attend a workshop, or engage in self-directed professional development so they can use new approaches and strategies to better teach my child.
- Had time to step back, reflect, and gain some distance in order to look forward with fresh eyes.
- Were able to truly relax. Research shows these people are happier, and I want my child surrounded by happier people.
- Took a time out from the classroom and away from my child because there is truth to the saying, “Absence makes the heart grow fonder”.
- Was able to fill their bucket so it won’t be empty for my child (or yours). You can’t give what you don’t have.
- Had time and opportunities to be reminded that there is life beyond the classroom and that that is what they are preparing my child for.
If you have ever felt a twinge of resentment for teachers and their schedules, I just want to leave you with these thoughts:
—We can use more passionate teachers in our profession and many come from previous careers that bring incredible experience and insights. If the grass looks greener over here, think about moving onto this lawn.
—I want my child to have a teacher with life experiences, extensive interests, a sense of wonder, expanded world views, and a renewed/refreshed enthusiasm for returning each year to teach my child. And I want that for your child, too.
What’s On My Book Radar
Amina’s Voice by Hena Khan
Amina and her best friend Soojin are entering middle school with lots of changes. As a Pakistani-American Muslim girl, Amina’s coming-of-age has some challenges I’ve never faced. Soojin is becoming an American citizen and wants to adopt an “American” name, her mosque is vandalized by hateful members of her community, and her uncle has come to stay with their family with varying views on what it means to be Muslim. We watch how Amina learns to find her voice and look for ways to bring together the people she cares about. We need more “windows and mirrors” books and this was certainly a wonderful window for me to observe the “normal” lives of “diverse” people. #BooksBuildBridges