Pure Literacy

3 Reasons Why Teachers Should Take a Summer Break

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This summer seems to be FLYING by! So I wanted to pop in again with a mid-Summer interruption... kind of like doing mid-workshop interruption. 

I’m here today to share with you a gentle reminder. Only this reminder isn’t instruction related. Truthfully, it’s just the opposite, but hopefully meaningful.

I want to share why I think it’s super important to take some time to for you. 

3 Reasons Why Teachers Should Take A Summer Break

Let’s be real, teachers rarely take time for themselves during the school year. That sets us up for really looking forward to summer when we can take time for ourselves, our families and all the other parts of our lives that often are neglected during the busy school year. 

However, more often than not summer rarely lives up to our hopes and expectations. It seems like the days just seem to whizz by, and frankly, about this time of summer, that sense of panic hits us as we realize we haven’t gotten to a fraction of the laundry list of things we had hoped to do! And of course, we haven’t even had a chance to really relax yet!!!

Just about now, those dreaded back-to-school shopping commercials are starting to take over the airwaves which serves as a huge wake-up call that soon it will be time to go back to the regular routine of the school year. Rather than feeling excited about the fresh start of the new school year and all the amazing things you want to try out in your classroom, you may be feeling hit with that sinking feeling that you are about to step right back on that merry-go-round.

Back To School Meme

Don’t get me wrong, it isn’t that you don’t love teaching. I know, if you are reading this, you are a dedicated teacher whose even committed to reading an educational blog during the summer! To be honest, if you are like me, it takes weeks to decompress after that good teacher tired feeling that you felt in June.

And for those of you who are teaching summer school you are probably thinking how can I even think about a summer break. That said, if you are teaching in the summer, it makes it even more important to have dedicated school-free time before heading back in fall. Even if that is scheduling in only a couple of days to enjoy the “dog days” of summer. That’s better than not taking any downtime at all. So I urge you to choose what works best for you, but write VACATION into your schedule and stick to it. 

So to support you in giving yourself permission to do this, here are my top 3 reasons why Teachers Should Take A Summer Break…

Reason #1 When you make time for things that matter in your life and take time to relax, you’ll be ready to face the challenges when you do go back to work.

Reason #2 A rested educator is a happy educator. And, a happy educator is more creative and productive! Often, when I create mental space and distance myself from teaching I find my best most creative ideas. There’s something about taking the pressure off and letting your mind wander… it makes your focused work time far more efficient and effective.

Reason #3 Summer represents a great opportunity to step back and look at the big picture. Allowing yourself an opportunity to focus on the person you are beyond the teacher gives you a chance to reflect and re-engage with your work with more clarity and a greater sense of purpose. Taking time off to rest and recover helps you restore a sense of balance which helps you reset your priorities and set realistic goals.

I learned early on that I needed to be away from the classroom during summer to refresh, restore, reset, and retool for the next school year. That extended break enabled me to re-enter the classroom with a fresh set of eyes and a renewed spirit.

So there you have it, the best advice I can offer to fellow educators. Giving of yourself to your students is always important, but don’t forget to take time for yourself! Doing so will enable you to return to the classroom with renewed dedication, energy and joy. 

Now with that in mind, I hope you’ll carve out some time to enjoy a few days of much deserved R and R! And as always, I’d love to hear from you in the comment section below. Let me know how you’ll be resting and recharging over summer.