Springtime: Countdowns & Reflections

This week’s #youredustory prompt:

Spring can be a tough time for teachers (with a stretch until spring break and then after it before summer). How do you help morale on campus as tiredness sets in and the kids get squirrely?

Many teachers and students look at springtime like a big count-down. I’ll admit I do too, but I also find it a time of renewal, invigoration, creativity, and exploration. While I too am tired and really looking forward to my summer plans – mainly the sleeping in kind; I also get that weird little bug that says, “Hey, try this” or “Try that.” And that’s exactly what I do.

Spring is my favorite time of year to start something new, rearrange the familiar, and get a little crazy! A few years ago, it was in the spring that I started ‘Genius Hour’. It’s become a staple in 5th grade at my site. I find spring the perfect time to experiment with new ideas. By this time in the year, I know what my students can handle, what I can push on them, and what is completely wrong for them. We know how to work together, what sets us off, and ultimately work as a cohesive unit. Now is the perfect time to try that idea you saw, read, or thought about. Work out the kinks with a group you know. That way,  by the fall it’ll be ready to go with a batch of newbies.

For me, spring is also a time of reflection. I look back at the year and think, “Where did the time go? October and Halloween seem like a distant memory.” I also think, “Wait a minute; it took me this long to break them in, now they leave? This is so unfair!”

I guess I keep morale up in my classroom by being happy and looking for the good. Sounds strange, but as they say, “Change your perspective, change your life.” Look for the amazing in your students, staff, and self. Yes, our job is hard. We are burnt out by the time spring hits. The students have a bad case of ‘Spring Fever’ (and yeah, we teachers do too). But look at how far we’ve all come in just a few short months. In the end, our job is truly amazing! Spring should be a time of celebration of all our accomplishments.

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