Something about watching the snow fall, as I sip coffee and eat a homemade breakfast, makes me wonder if nourishment and rest are the only two things that derive from “taking a break.” Yes, food is wonderful - and sitting down is a luxury - but the privilege of choosing what to do and when to do it is the most valuable element.
Time is of the essence for teachers. Lessons, grade books, conferences, phone calls, and meetings are just some of the structured items in our daily jobs. The school day is a rush of productivity, brainwork, and physical demand. So, when Friday night arrives, some of us cannot imagine doing anything more intellectual or active than watching mindless television.
However, “winter break” however resonates something. There’s more time - time to reflect, time to rest, time to do anything you want to do without the pressure of knowing you have a lesson to plan or essays to grade. Winter break says, “You don’t have to think about this today or tomorrow.”
From September to December, winter break is something to look forward to…and it’s customizable. You can take a road trip down to Florida (which is what I did this year). Or, you can catch up with things in your own city and home, which is what I did last year. These endless opportunities are the beauty of winter break. In order to make the most of it, here’s some major points you can’t forget:
While our most recent break may have passed, we can still keep our eyes ahead to MLK Day, Spring Break, and other little “mini-breaks” along the way. I encourage you to take full advantage of time off – stay well, my friends!
Amanda Amanullah is a 7th grade English teacher in Newark, NJ. Her inspiration comes from her own journey in becoming a better reader and writer. Through teaching, she wants to help others discover and pursue their strengths and interests, making an impact in their communities and beyond. She would be remiss not to mention that the most interesting poetry she's ever read was written by her 4th grade students in Philadelphia - quoting Robert Frost in a rap never looked so good.