Eleven tips to integrate yourself into summer

Well, the students have gone and the workmen have already moved in to renovate the courtyard and start the summer refurbishment program. The chairs are all stacked up and my Year 11 English room has been stripped of any vestiges of its 2007 identity.

It’s a funny feeling, this end of the year thing. Having said goodbye to the students and now most of the teachers, it’s time to file away the manila folders (strictly following GTD guidelines of course!) back up the hard drive, create some new folders for next year in OneNote and hassle the timetabler for a class list.

So, after a year of intensive, how do you quickly settle into those precious summer holidays? Here’s my tips to get to that nirvana-like state more quickly?

  • Stop checking work email (at least for a week)
  • Spend some time talking to adults who DON’T work in a school.
  • Don’t wait for a boiling day; have a swim as soon as you can. Swimming early leads to more swimming more often, which is a good thing.
  • Drag your towel and beach bag out. When you’ve got a towel permanently drying on the back deck you know you’re on holiday.
  • Go somewhere different for coffee. That regular morning guy reminds you of work.
  • Take all the Christmas cards from the office home. They look so sad on January 21 when you open up an office stuffy from a stifling summer and they’re all blown over and curled up.
  • Turn your formidable organisational skills to Christmas planning: (I use a Filemaker Pro database for my Christmas card list). Use lists: try to make as few trips to the shops as possible. Especially avoid shopping malls like Chadstone and Southland. They do not promote a holiday vibe.
  • If you do have to go to the shops, choose ones you get pleasure out of yourself. I recommend Readings Bookshops, Dick Smith Electronics and Lawrencia Cycling in Glenferrie Road.
  • Read the newspaper, properly, and start doing the crossword. Doing the crossword is a clear indicator you’ve got time on your hands.
  • Read a book that’s NOT on any English course.
  • Pack away the PDA and the swipe card and the external hard drive backup and close the office door quietly behind you.

And a Happy Christmas to all my reader!


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