That's most years, but not this year.
This year in May I was wrapping up my second year as a Teacherpreneur and trying to figure out how I was going to manage coming back to my library full time without my partner, Kelly. Although I was looking forward to taking complete responsibility for my program again, the benefit of our daily collaboration and division of labor was going away. I also decided to sell my house and make plans to move. The majority of my summer was spent fixing and cleaning and throwing away and negotiating, leaving very little time for professional development.
Somewhere along the way I made a connection between the moving process and my teaching. After thirteen years I feel pretty confident in my practice. I know I want to continue to grow and add new things, but I also know I need to maintain what I have. So before I move on to another new strategy or program, I will be making time to fix and clean (and possibly throw out) my current practices. I'm making a conscious effort to get my current house in order before I expand into a new one.
Here's a few things I'm working on:
Managing my time: I love to write, but I waste too much time on emails. I read an article this summer about 5 sentence emails (http://www.fastcompany.com/3014857/leadership-now/why-every-email-should-be-5-sentences-long) and I've adopted the practice. I shared the article with my colleagues so they would understand my shifting philosophy. So far the response has been positive.
Online scheduling: I have no idea why I held on to a paper schedule for so long. I started using YouCanBook.Me (https://youcanbook.me/) which allows my teachers and administrators to schedule their own classes. Again, the response has been positive.
Sharing the wealth: I've always been quick to volunteer to implement a new idea or to lead a group. However, I've realized I have too much on my plate already and frankly it's not fun anymore. So, I've been looking for ways to elevate other teachers in to leadership roles at my school and within my networks. There are so many people just waiting to be asked to fill a leadership role. This approach has helped me build relationships and promote the best practice of others. Win-win!
As teachers with experience, there are all kinds of things we do because it's what we've always done. I would urge every teacher to be reflective of not just the outcomes of their work but the what and why of their work. What are you still doing that you could do better or not at all?