It’s cute, really — your students imagine your summer vacation being every bit as carefree as their own. After all, what could teachers possibly work on outside the classroom?
But of course, the truth is that even when you’re relaxing by the pool or traveling with your family, your brain is working on strategies for next year’s classes. You can’t help it: being a teacher is a year-round job, no matter what anyone says.
That’s why summer is a great time to learn new skills, deepen your understanding of child behavior and psychology, and investigate successful teaching solutions and strategies. Here are a few ways to channel your productive energy this summer.
Attend a conference.
Whether your school pays for your professional development or you just want to improve your skills, the summer is a great time to attend education conferences and workshops.
- ISTE (June 23-26, 2019, Philadelphia, PA) – The International Society for Education in Technology hosts one of the premiere events for educators, featuring four full days of inspirational learning and big ideas. See education-related keynotes from nationally recognized teachers, students, artists, technology makers, filmmakers (including a Pixar director of photography!), and much more.
Attending ISTE? So are we! Check out our special giveaways and events
- BbWorld (July 23-25, 2019, Austin, TX) – Head to Austin for three full days of sessions and workshops geared toward providing educators with insights, best practices and forward-thinking ideas you can take back to your school.
- Play Make Learn (Aug. 8-9, 2019, Madison, WI) – If you want to learn more about promoting making, gaming, and playful learning in your classroom, this conference is for you. Attendees will engage in hands-on workshops and keynote sessions covering cutting-edge learning science ideas, see demonstrations of new and upcoming games and technology, and network with other colleagues who are discovering how to offer playful learning too.
Do some reading.
Beyond the daily devotional calendars and coffee table books your students give you as a send-off gift each year, your summer reading should include books that feed your mind and soul, like these:
The Good News about Bad Behavior: Why Kids Are Less Disciplined than Ever and What to Do About It – Journalist and parenting expert Katherine Reynolds Lewis blends new scientific research and powerful stories to show that, when we trust children to face their own consequences, they learn to adapt and moderate their behavior. This book was written for parents, but is helpful for teachers who want to equip students with better behavior skills.
The Self-Driven Child: The Science and Sense of Giving Your Kids More Control Over Their Lives – Similar to The Good News about Bad Behavior, this book offers practical advice for helping adults release control and give students ownership over their lives in order to raise (and teach) more stable and less anxious individuals.
Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance – If you haven’t yet read this multi-month bestseller, this summer may be a great time to catch up. This book goes behind the scenes to see how achievers with grit handle challenges, from undergoing West Point boot camp to becoming a finalist in the National Spelling Bee to teaching in tough schools.
Research classroom technology.
Summer is also a perfect time to explore technology and solutions you’re considering for your classroom. (Remember, technology companies are not off for the summer — we’re happy to hear from you!) Here are a few great places to start:
- Read (and write) reviews on G2 – This site offers user reviews of education software (and so much more) and is a great place to start researching products and providers you’re interested in. And if you’re already a LanSchool or LanSchool Air user, be sure to leave an honest review!
- Look into Clever – Clever makes rostering easy and automatic across software programs so you don’t have to manually update rosters every time a student joins or leaves. More and more schools are using Clever to solve these challenges, which is why the LanSchool and LanSchool Air classroom management software platform is proud to now integrate with Clever!
- Become a LanSchool or LanSchool Air power user – If you’ve only been using select features of our products, summer is a great time to attend demos and learn how to utilize the full feature set in your classroom. Follow us on Twitter to see upcoming events, or see upcoming webinars and demos at LanSchool or LanSchool Air.
However you spend your summer vacation, we hope it’s restful, productive, and full of fun. Here’s to a happy summer and a great school year to come!