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Strategies for recharging your batteries over the holidays

The academic year can be a hard slog. That’s why the extended break can be the ideal time to recover and recharge for the term ahead. But with limited time and oh so many options available, where do you start?

As the school year winds down and the summer horizon beckons, it's essential for teachers and school staff to find ways to unwind and recharge following the madness of the academic year. The summer holidays offer a precious opportunity to step back from the whiteboard and breathe. Here are some rejuvenating tips and techniques to help you make the most of your well-deserved break.

Get ahead of the curve: Returning to school after the break is all too often a sprint for everyone within the school. Look ahead to that time, what can you prepare, of complete as this term is ending to set yourself up for the start of the next term? It’s amazing how something as innocuous as messy cupboards or unorganised desk drawers can play on your mind during the holidays.

Disconnect to reconnect: Take a digital detox by stepping away from emails and school-related communication. This break from the digital world can reduce stress and improve mental well-being. Instead, immerse yourself in the world around you; perhaps through nature walks, gardening, or beach days, allowing the natural environment to restore your energy.

Indulge in a hobby or learn something new: Summer is the perfect time to pick up that guitar, start a blog, or dive into a stack of books you've been meaning to read. Engaging in activities unrelated to teaching can provide a fresh perspective and spark creativity.

Prioritise self-care: Whether it's yoga, meditation, or simply taking long baths, find what relaxes you and make it a non-negotiable part of your day. Self-care is not selfish; it's necessary to maintain the passion and energy required for teaching.

Engage in creative pursuits: Whether it's painting, writing, crafting, whatever you choose. Our minds are more open to exploring creativity when it’s not fighting against the daily demands of our jobs.

Connect with others: Take advantage of your opportunity to spend quality time with family and friends without a bulging marking list or lesson planning getting in the way.

Remember, recharging is about finding what works for you. It's about giving yourself permission to rest and engage in activities that replenish your energy and bring you happiness.

It’s inevitable that your mind may wander to the upcoming term and work needing done. Many teachers that we speak with say that they take time during the holidays to prepare for the next term. Remember to keep this activity limited; the goal is to reduce stress, not add to it.

The summer holiday is a marathon, not a sprint. Take it slow, enjoy each day, and you'll return to school feeling refreshed and ready to inspire the minds of the future. Happy Summer!

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