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Time for teachers to recover

Posted by Karabo Kgophane on 11 November 2021, 10:20 SAST
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The end of a school year brings a range of emotions, which can be overwhelming. Saying goodbye to students can be tough but usually, teachers are so tired when the school year is about to end that they need some time to recover. 

The upcoming school break is a good opportunity for teachers to give more time to aspects of their lives that are often neglected. Having some rest from a long stressful year will allow you to go back to work with a renewed passion and energy. When you don’t take the time to relieve stress, you can end up struggling to be effective in the classroom. You need to focus on caring for your wellness before you can support and care for your students.

 

Let’s take a closer look at why the school break is so important for teacher wellness.

 

Helps to relax and recharge

When you’re at school, you’re constantly thinking and planning what do to next. That habit can spill over into the school break. Your brain, however, needs some time to rest and relax, so give it time to switch off. Consider getting away from your emails and daily school-year habits. It will help you to reconnect with yourself and your family. Take a nap, read a book, sleep in and enjoy the benefits of your break. A well-rested teacher is a happy teacher. When you’re happy, you will become more productive and patient when you go back to work. 

 

Slow down and take care of your physical and mental health.

It’s important to take a part of your holidays to slow down and find a new rhythm. It’s easy, as an educator, to give so much of yourself away to others that you forget to take care of your basic needs. Get back into the habit of running or hiking or doing yoga. Try cycling, swimming or going for a walk to connect with nature. The school break can be a time when you can hit the reset button and focus on your own physical and mental health. This will become beneficial for you, your organisation and most importantly, for your students.

 

Helps to discover new hobbies

Do you remember the last time you enjoyed doing hobbies? Take time to try something new. This could be baking, crafting, paddle boarding, dancing, cycling or whatever it is that makes you happy. You give so much of yourself to others, now is the time to focus on yourself. Your energy and newly acquired skills will help you to plan something new and exciting for your students.

 

Motivates

Although it’s totally fine to spend your break on a true holiday, it’s also fine to spend part of your summer on your professional development. Use your time to attend a workshop for something you’re interested in and become a student for a change. Read a professional book, seek out fresh resources and surround yourself with people who also love to teach and are armed with new ideas to implement. This can help reignite your passion for teaching and prevent teacher burnout. 

 

Being a dedicated teacher is a wonderful thing. But remember, you also have to take care of yourself to be the best teacher that you can be. You’ve poured your heart and soul into this school year, don’t feel guilty for resting. It’s what your students need.

 

Source: Education Staff Bank

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