We’ve all seen the end-of-year teacher memes that make us laugh and capture what it’s like to be an educator this time of year. There’s the dishevelled owl with blood shot eyes and the one that reminds us that “there’s no tired like end-of-year teacher tired.” Whether or not these memes reflect your current mental or physical state, there’s no doubt that June is a challenging time for all education-sector employees. Not only is there extra work involved in wrapping up the school year, but the anticipation of summer and its sweet taste of freedom makes the end-of-year push all the more trying. Luckily, The Sandbox has some great resources to help you finish the year off strong!
- Be kind to yourself. During this busy time, remember that adequate rest is important, no matter how busy you are. As Leanne Keyko reminds us in her blog, ‘I don’t want to work,’ resilience isn’t about ‘powering through’ or ‘toughing it out.’ It’s about giving your mind and body the rest it needs so you can be effective and present when you’re working. This rest can come through short periods of relaxation during the work day, such as taking 10 deep breaths, going for a walk around the building or through longer relaxation periods outside of work—like spending time outside with loved ones, meditating or taking a well-deserved nap!
- Bring back the healthy. With the hustle and bustle of year-end, it’s natural to want to wrap everything up as quickly as possible so you can move right into summer. In the rush to the finish line, don’t forget to take the time to ensure your workspace is still in a healthy state. As Candace Nykiforuk explains it in her blog, supporting employee health by fostering individual health happens when we maintain social and physical settings conducive to health. One small example is defining—and tidying—the space where you and your colleagues eat lunch together. It can have a huge impact on you and your team’s well-being because it can help boost feelings of belonging and self-esteem by encouraging positive social connections.
As you tidy up your classrooms and offices, finish up your paperwork and marking and say good-bye to students and colleagues, don’t forget to make some time for yourself and set your future-self up for a healthy, inviting work environment before it’s all over. You never know, you might just get that second, third or fourth wind you need to finish it off stronger than ever!