“Rest when you’re weary. Refresh and renew yourself, your body, your mind, your spirit. Then get back to work.” – Ralph Marston
I have heard for the last few years in education, we have to do more and more and more. I have been told that I have to do more for the children. While I understand that the nature of teaching means that I will have to bring work home with me. Should it be the case, not really, but it is true that the needs are great. However, should I be working myself to oblivion in order to make up for the high needs of students, or to make up for the lack of support from the education system in the United States? Many would say the answer is yes, and many educators do that. Many see staying at school late and working at home all hours of the night as some kind of badge of honor. The main lesson that the pandemic taught me was over working did not do me any favors. I discovered that rest made me a more effective teacher than working all hours of the night. This has been one of my most challenging school years ever, but because I have chosen to prioritize myself more this year, I have actually been able to take on the challenges better. I decided to keep what I was doing simply. I do look to make over complicated lessons, and I share the responsibility of lesson planning with my colleagues. Do I still have to work in the evenings, yes, but I’m not staying up all hours of the night trying to get things done. I used to go in super early on Mondays to make copies, now I take advantage of the fact that students have computers they can work off of. The job is not any easier, but I am more guarded with my time. This way I can spend more time doing what I love more. I have time to ride my bike on the weekends, take photos, write and create more. I am also a better teacher on the job because I have rested.
Here is an example of what my rest time looks like. I rode my bicycle over to Marshall Park in Uptown Charlotte. I’ve been here a few times, but these photos are from a different perspective of the park that I had not photographed before. I typically photograph the park from the top of the observation deck, but on this day, I had decided to try to photograph it from different views in order for me to see the park in a new light.