Friday, November 14, 2014

5 Ways To Get Rid Of A Teacher Funk

"Why am I in such a funk?"
This is the question and sentiment all teachers have around this time of year.  

October and November bring on that dreaded feeling of disillusionment.  
You are 
          worn out 
             and ready for a vacation.
What are some easy ways to banish the Teacher BLAHS away for good? 

Let’s do a reset and bring on some happiness.

Tip #1: Close the Books:  
Time to slow down and have some enjoyable, relaxing time with your students.  Step away from the text books, projects, worksheets, and Teachers Pay Teachers.  We are always caught up in the 'Get Done' mode. Relax with your students.  Ask students questions about life, have some free choice time, play a game with them, participate in the Go Noodle Brain Break with your students.  Have fun with them! 

Tip #2:  Basque in the Sunlight: 
Let your students put some sunshine into your life with a thank you note or letter written to you. They describe some learning highlights and shower you with appreciation.  If you don't want to toot your own horn let your students do it for you!   
Tip #3:  Start up the Band:  
Bring on the music.  Turn the volume up.  Sing along.  Drum the steering wheel.  Let the music rev you up. Use music in your classroom to spark imagination.  Ask students what their favorite songs are.  As long as they are appropriate make a DJ list and play these songs during the day when students are good.  I have had times when a student has better musical taste then me, and I learn what is hip in the music world.   

Tip #4:  Call in the Troops:  
Reach out to a friend or family member with a simple request.  Come to my classroom and help me spruce up my room for the holidays. You know they are going to love helping you, and you’ll definitely feel happier when the bulletin board or decorations look spectacular.  Recently, I stopped by a friends new classroom before we went out to dinner.  She was hired late in the summer and barely had time to put her room together.  I pulled out the bright pink bulletin board paper and soon her bulletin board was beautiful. It was on her to do list, but had no time.  She said just looking at the cheery pink andjust knowing I put it up for her, put a pep in her step. 

Tip #5:  Get Real with Yourself:  
Maybe you have developed some bad habits since August. Are you snacking on sweets, drinking too many sodas, eating tons of carbs, or going on a coffee binge in the morning?  Stop.  Change your routine.  Your body and mind will thank you.

5 MORE tips to beat the Teacher Funk Blues:

Bonus Tip:  
Embrace your inner student.  Up until this point you have had to run a tight ship.  Keeping your students in line and setting the rules and procedures.  You are in total adult teacher mode.  Don't forget that you need to be a kid sometimes too.  Cry, pout, whine, belly laugh, say silly things... You need someone to take care of you.  You need to eat a cupcake and get it all over your face. Roll in the grass, splash in the rain, do some jazz hands and get ridiculous.  Let you inner kid out with glee and take off your serious pants for awhile.  

When you get a dose of happy, your body has a chance to bolster its immune system.  The goal is to stay healthy, so you can really enjoy your upcoming vacation.  

Got any holiday plans?  Leave a comment below! 

Friday, November 7, 2014

Paycheck Spent On Your Classroom? Get What Students Need In 4 Easy No Cost Steps PLUS A GIVEAWAY!

Stay tuned to the end of this post for a giveaway! 

Fellow teacher bloggers talk about it and have success. Melinda Gates and Katie Couric can’t stop talking about it. 

It made Oprah’s favorite list.  

And let me just say, I am a HUGE Oprah fanatic.  Like HUGE.    

Yet I still wasn’t convinced.

Why didn’t I run right to the website?  Sign up?  Get on board?  And what exactly am I talking about?

Donor’s Choose. is a way for public school teachers to post a classroom project and request and then wonderful people can give any amount to the project.  

Great concept.  Yet why have I never jumped on board?    

My inner skeptic asks:

Is it easy?   Are my chances at getting what I want very slim?  I imagine the teachers who get funded are from low income schools.  There is probably a time consuming Donors Choose obligation after I receive my request.  And surely, there is a packet of paperwork to fill out, and I have no time for that.  The things I request won’t be delivered until next year. 

Bottom Line:  Is it worth my time?  Without really looking into it.  The sceptic in me won, hands down.  I answered, NO.

Now I know the real scoop. I had the pleasure of interviewing Lindsey from the blog Thriving In Third.  She has successfully used Donor’s Choose and broke the process down nice and simple.  Listen to our interview. 

Check Out Education Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with Sheila Jane Teaching on BlogTalkRadio

Easy steps: 1) Post classroom project request on Donors Choose
                    2) Shipped to you, when a project reaches its funding goal
                    3) Write a letter: thank the donors and explain how money was spent
                            (over $50 received, students write thank you to donors posted for donors
                            to see.)
                    4) Send a picture of project in action

As our students like to say: Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy.

Your school, students, principal and parents will have an Oprah ah ha moment when they realize you made something wonderful happen for the school.

a Rafflecopter giveaway