A festive article written by Amy, one of our bloggers, on how you can make the most of your time off during the Christmas break.
Doesn’t it annoy you when people go on and on about how long teachers get for holidays? We all know that in the real world, a great deal of holiday time is taken up by marking, planning and preparation. At Christmas time, it is important to get the balance right between work and family or social time. Here are my top tips on how to make the most of your Christmas break….
1. Christmas Shop Early and Shop Online! If you plan your Christmas shopping in advance, it becomes much less stressful. The last thing that you want is to be panicking in the run up to Christmas eve, so use www.amazon.co.uk and shop online. It will all be delivered to the comfort of your own home, without you needing to face the crowds.
2. Make the most of your frees and spare hours in the last few school days leading up to Christmas. It can be tempting to gorge on mince pies in the staffroom, but remember that whatever work you do not complete during this time, you will be taking home!
3. Plan the first few days of the holiday in advance. Procrastinating feels horrible, and you won’t fully relax with your friends and family if you know that there is a massive pile of marking hanging over you head. Perhaps get up at normal school time for the first 2 days of your holiday in order to do 3 solid hours before lunch.
4. Prioritise. There are never really enough hours in the day to do all that we need to do. You could easily fill the whole of your Christmas holiday with school work and marking. I know someone who was marking on Christmas day last year! If it is levelled marking or marking for the exam board, it needs to be done. Planning for the first 2 days back may also be necessary. Other than that, cross it off your list until the new year.
5. Between Christmas and New Year, take a COMPLETE BREAK. It is so important for your body (and mind) to switch off and take a complete break. You need to make time for your family and friends to give you a balanced life, which in turn will make you a better teacher. Switching off completely for at least a week is also good for your mental health. Too many teachers are suffering from stress and anxiety, which needs to improve.
Overall, remember to have fun with the kids and fun at home as well. Christmas doesn’t need to be overwhelming if you plan properly. Book your work and social activities in your diary TODAY to lead a fulfilling and enjoyable Christmas as a teacher. You deserve it!