Major assessments are being undertaken by students. Report writing has commenced. Curriculum documentation is being prepared for next year and a major overhaul is occurring in readiness for 2012. Departmental budgets are coming to a close, many meetings are taking place and associated departmental reports are being composed.
Add to this the many school social events taking place including - Year 12 graduation and valedictory dinners, Year 8 graduation celebrations and dinner, Speech and Awards nights, House athletics competitions, Spring APS sporting championships, Community Fashion Parade, Ladies' special 'Cup' luncheon, not to mention the soon to begin early Christmas parties, due to school breaking up on 9th December.
At this time of year, it is all too easy to become exhausted and overwhelmed by the work load and its associated stress. In addition, students are also becoming weary and teary! When this occurs, there is the danger of teachers donning the glasses of negativity and forgetting all that is good. Therefore, I believe it is time for me to remind myself just how grateful I am for what I have. The following is just a snapshot of the wonderful things in my working life.
- I work in a career that I am passionate about and I am fortunate that I have the choice to do so
- I have the opportunity to share in students' journeys as they learn and I get to witness their 'aha' moments
- I can watch my students grow from young children into incredibly talented and responsible young adults
- I am fortunate to work in an environment with great facilities
- My workplace has strong, talented and innovative leaders who listen willingly to others' ideas
- I work with dedicated, talented colleagues from whom I am able to continuously learn
- I am listened to at work and my ideas are welcomed
- Although I work incredibly long hours, I get the opportunity in the holidays to 'recharge' and 'refresh' as well as to add to my professional development
Now, having looked at some of the many things in my work life for which I am really grateful, I think perhaps I need to take active steps this year towards minimising my stress levels. The following site by music educator Karen Stafford: http://www.musiceducationmadness.com/stress.shtml has some wonderful suggestions. Particularly her fifth point: Allow yourself 5 pieces of dark, delectable chocolate. Don't wolf them down, but savor them. SLOWWWLLY.
I also like @zenhabits blog - http://zenhabits.net/start/ for suggestions and ideas.
So, here's to a far more positive and hopefully less stressful lead up to the Christmas holidays :)