July is typically the time of the year that teachers think about school the least. Summer school is over. You’ve finally had a chance to catch up with your own life for a little while. You can drive past your school, and the car doesn’t automatically turn into the parking lot. July can be a special time to sleep a little more, play with your kids, or read a book just for fun.
But now July is almost over.
Sorry. I know that was rather abrupt. But that’s the way school comes back, doesn’t it? At the beginning of June, the summer stretches out before you, full of promise. Then, July rolls in with its picnics and fireworks, and the downhill slide toward the end of summer begins.
Three weeks ago, I was in a major chain store innocently shopping for routine things like band-aids, paper towels, fruit…and then I saw them. You know what I’m about to say, right?
The side aisles were stacked with boxes that were emblazoned with the label, “Back to School.” Employees were loading the shelves with pencils, paper, backpacks, and lunchboxes. Every year, the sight brings mixed emotions for me. I LOVED school as a child – and as an elementary teacher. Getting those fresh crayons, the pens full of ink, and that crisp clean notebook paper – it all indicated a new start. New teachers. New classes. New students. New worries. New sleepless nights. New piles of papers to grade.
Teaching is a passionate calling for most educators. They love being with their students, igniting that spark of learning. But, teaching is also incredibly challenging these days. Requirements of every sort are pushed down from the federal level all the way to your classroom. Students’ lives can be complex and messy.
There’s so much to do and so few hours in the day. The end of July can bring all of the associated emotions to the surface.
Help is here.
For this school year, the Dear Dr. Mooney community will be here to provide advice and support along with the way. You don’t have to navigate all of those mixed emotions alone.
So as you begin to look toward the new school year…
- What are you most looking forward to?
- Will you have English learners in your classes this year?
- What are your greatest worries or concerns regarding their academic and linguistic needs?
Ask your questions. Share your advice.
July has been a month focused on discussion within the Dear Dr. Mooney community. If you haven’t had time to join the discussions, it’s never too late.
Read back through this month’s articles and contribute to conversations in the discussion forums. Then, let us hear your questions and concerns.
Find a discussion forum that relates to your question and let the Dear Dr. Mooney community help you find an answer!