New Years Resolution
Keep. Lose. Develop. The key ingredients to surviving in the classroom long term. Factor them into the start to the spring term and work to make the process integral to your way of working so that by the end of the year it is second nature. You will reap the benefits of doing so. For me it meant feeling like I had my head above the water rather than trying desperately to grab a breath of air before I Was sucked back under water by workload.
Keep. Reflect on your practice. What do you actually do with your time? List the tasks. What are the tasks on your list that are high importance? The type of tasks you need to do to keep on top of things? I have some tasks that I do daily, without fail, to meet school policies e.g. entering incidents/ positives on SIMS and sending home a positive message to a parent. Some tasks that are weekly like EPEP entries and some that are half termly like data drops. I deal with these tasks first, on my own and in my classroom — then I get a nice freashly brewed coffee. It turns out that I work more efficiently if I do the tasks first then get my end of day coffee.
Lose. In order to achieve part three (develop) you are going to have to work out how you are going to create time for it. What do you do that you can streamline or lose entirely? For me it was ditching making loads of little laminated cards that looked beautiful and were useful for only a few lessons at best and one at worst. It released a whole lot of time to do other things.
Develop. This is the part that really keeps your brain engaged and active. It gives you a chance to become better at what you do.For these reasons and more, it is central to job satisfaction and the well-being and happiness that that can bring with it. What is it that you want to do more of? Or do better? Or is there a problem you want to solve? An example of one of the areas I focused on was helping the parents of targeted ‘naughty kids’ to build positive relationships with their child therefore helping the parent to have more influence over their child and better relations with the school.
So, the million dollar questions for you now are very simple. What are you going to keep? What are you going to lose? What are you going to develop?
Are there any that don’t serve an actual purpose? Are there any that could