Why no work is no good
Over the summer vacation, it's very tempting to do absolutely nothing for work, and completely switch off for five or six weeks. I always envied those colleagues who would fly off the day after the end of school, and arrive back in the country the day before school restarted. Unfortunately, I always found the shock to the system of suddenly becoming frenetic again when the next semester starts was not pleasant! So, in case you're like me, here is my 6 point plan for making the transition from vacation to work as smooth as possible.
Switch off completely
For the first couple of weeks, don't check work emails, don't catch up with lesson prep and even, if you can, have a complete digital detox as far as work is concerned: no Twitter, no email, no anything if you use it work.
The term 'rest actively' may sound like an oxymoron, but what it means is that rather than slump in a chair for two weeks, get up and do something, like swimming or running or playing tennis. I find that being active tends to be more relaxing and, ultimately, energizing, while slumping in a chair for days on end makes me ever more tired as the days drag on.
Immerse yourself in a good book
I suggest a book rather than binge watching Game of Thrones or something because watching TV is just more screen time. For me, a good book is a thriller or a detective story, or time travel yarns. Pure escapism!
Ease your way back in
Around week three of the vacation, feeling thoroughly rested, start to think about work-related stuff. Nothing too arduous, maybe checking out a TED video or two, or a few websites, and maybe a book.
Start prepping again
In the last week of the vacation, start preparing again. This sounds like voluntarily having a shorter break, but from my point of view it was enlightened self-interest. I hate that feeling of not having quite caught up.
Go into school
Around the middle of the final week of the vacation, you might find it useful to go into school. While it's nice and quiet you can make sure your classroom is prepared, perhaps with a new display on the walls. The reason I suggest doing this mid-week is so that on the Thursday and Friday you can forget about work altogether. Have a lovely long weekend, and then glide into school on the first day feeling not only refreshed, but fully prepared too!
About Terry Freedman
Terry is an independent writer, speaker and trainer, based in England. He publishes the ICT & Computing in Education blog at www.ictineducation.org. His Amazon page is http://viewAuthor.at/terryfreedman