How to finish the year strong
Every school year is a new challenge but this has been more so than ever in the past few years. Despite the changes and uncertainty around us, what can we do to stay positive as we finish out the school year. There’s a lot!
Five Strategies to Finish the Year Strong
- Set an intention–Not to get all woo-woo on you here but this is a useful technique for whatever you are doing that is new. Athletes, entertainers and CEO’s use this technique successfully to create optimum performance. It can work equally well for educators.
- Begin with the end in mind. Picture or visualize how you want to finish out the school year. The tendency is to be so busy doing (managing student behavior, teaching lessons, putting out fires) that we expend all of our energy and don’t take the time to be. Imagine how you want the end of the year to feel; excited, enthusiastic, focused, successful, focused, etc.
- Revisit your teaching method–This is always a good idea but mid-year is a good time to re-evaluate and make changes if necessary. Consider it an opportunity to look at your materials and curriculum with a renewed fresh look.
- Imagine that you are seeing it for the first time. Have you gotten in a rut? How are you managing your time? Are you responding to the important things as well as the urgent? How will you engage students, pique their curiosity, personalize the message? Make sure the environment, whether classroom or virtual, reflects your new vision.
- Stay positive–it is really easy to let the negative drag you down. There are always too many things to do, too many students to adequately serve, too few resources, too many meetings to attend and not enough time.
- Reserve judgement. Expect the unexpected and see it as a learning experience. Choose to be a positivity role model for students and staff and you will find your enthusiasm is contagious. Surround yourself with others whore reflect your positive energy… can’t find anyone at school? Make sure you get support outside of the school environment.
- Focus on and process the experience as much as the material. It’s easy to bemoan the fact that it’s hard to teach or counsel students because of all the extenuating factors in their lives.
- Instead view those circumstances as an opportunity to find new and more effective ways to reach students. Sometimes the biggest lesson you can teach is how to handle disappointment and adversity.
- Take care of yourself–there will never be enough time to do it all. One reason you became an educator was because of your creative, heart-centered giving spirit.
- Make sure sure that you direct that energy toward yourself as well as the students you serve. When you take care of yourself, you are modeling for students how they can take care of themselves and that is an invaluable lesson.
By following a plan, you will be able to not only meet the expectations of parents and students, but also enjoy the fruits of your efforts and finish strong.
Wyatt the Wonder Dog didn’t make it on the All Star baseball team and he feels like a loser. All his friends will be playing baseball this summer, while he and his pesky sister, Callie, visit grandparents at the beach. How Wyatt learns to handle disappointment and failure will be an important lesson for the future. Will he give up trying new things? Will he have the confidence to try again? Are there some things that take more practice and persistence to learn than others?
This book is funny! Its dogs doing things that only people do! I learned to try new things. ~Samuel Traub, Age 6