Tuesday, July 31, 2012

A Checklist for the Summer Months-Do you create one?

I find myself to be a pretty motivated person.  I am excited to wake up in the morning, clear my head with a run, and tackle the day.  At the end of each school year I find that the thought of 11 or so weeks is the perfect amount of time to tackle some things that I did not have the time for during the school year, that I would love to learn to do.

I am not a list person, as I know many people are, but I keep this mental list that keeps me a bit inspired all summer.  This year "the list of things I wanted to accomplish during summer" included:
  1. Complete potty training for my three-year old.
  2. Move said three-year old into a "big girl bed" successfully.
  3. Work on writing and reading each day with my six-year old.
  4. Enhance my blog.
  5. Create items for Teachers Pay Teachers.
  6. Try exercise other than running each day.
  7. Read a book a week.
  8. Learn to sew.
The checklist went a little something like this...

I am excited to say that for the most part, it has been a productive summer and I have been able to check many items right off of the list fairly easily.  Not the goal necessarily that things are easy, but things have been accomplished.

1.  My daughter was nearly potty trained at the end of the school year, and with a few minor battles and a few packages of "Princess Undies"-Task ACCOMPLISHED!

2.  She has been very content in her crib-never a climber, so I just thought waiting until summer would be perfect to put her in a bed.  In case of some restless nights, summer is the perfect transition time-surely it was-I only had to take one baby from her, one time, and she has yet to leave her bed again!  Task ACCOMPLISHED!

3.  My son is witty, smart, active, kind-hearted, and thoughtful.  He can make anything out of something that it wasn't intended because of his "engineering" mind.  What he doesn't like to do is sit down and write.  He never has.  When most babies like to scribble with crayons, he wanted no part in that.  He could play all day, but writing takes some work for him.  In fact he has told me all summer that "none of my other friends have to journal."  My response is always, "well they should."  So each day we tackle a journal entry, his kindergarten Star Words list, some flash cards of high frequency words, and five books.  Despite the griping, I will say he has become both a better reader and writer this summer.  He spent a good amount of our vacation reading signs as we drove to Hilton Head.  I am proud of him.  Task ACCOMPLISHED!

4.  Thanks to everyone who has checked out my blog and become a follower.  This has been such a fun experience learning so much about the blogging world.  I love checking in on so many inspirational blogs and hearing so many great ideas from you!  Task ACCOMPLISHED-although I will still view it as a work in progress!

5. I created two items for Teachers Pay Teachers that I am so excited to utilize with my students this year.  while it is time consuming, it was rewarding to create a novel unit and Word Work to go along with my implementing of the Daily 5.  Task ACCOMPLISHED!

6. I am lucky to have such great workout buddies.  My friend Rachel, who I run with most frequently, actually pushed the CRT and Barbell classes. Joining up with my friend Maria for these twice a week classes has been a blast.  I would like to think I am in pretty good shape after this summer. We will be tackling the Indianapolis Half Marathon this October as well.  Task ACCOMPLISHED!

7.  I can't say I have read a book a week, but I have read a ton this summer.  I have read many resources to enhance my teaching and a few novels that I can't wait to share with my students.  The Daily 5, which I finally had the chance to read this summer, has changed everything for me, and I head back to the classroom completely inspired.  Task ACCOMPLISHED!

8. I am sad to say that this is the one item on my to do list that got zero attention.  I have this fabulous sewing machine in my basement that will have to wait until next summer.  While I still have a few weeks, there are baby showers to attend in Chicago, back to school events and football for my son, classroom organization, lesson planning, etc. on my plate.  I am not one for excuses, but I fell short this summer.  Learning to sew will be at the top of the list next year!

I hope in all of the hustle bustle of summer you were able to take on some things that you did not have the chance to get to during last school year!   It can be a challenge to work your tail off as a classroom teacher AND do all of the other things that are important in life.  Most importantly, if checking things off of your list did not happen, I hope you took some time to relax and rejuvenate so you are inspired to be back in your classroom as a SUPERSTAR TEACHER!  Good luck as you head back into the trenches!



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