Sunday, May 28, 2023

The End of Another School Year

My school year has now come to an end. Finals have been graded. Grades have been posted. Graduation has commenced. My classroom has been packed away for the next few months. I am now officially on summer vacation.

I do not know if it has truly hit me that the school year is over. It is always feels weird to transition from the frantic rush of the end of the year with finals, graduation, and post-planning to now suddenly having two months off. When I look back at it all, I cannot help but feel such a sense of accomplishment: I got through it. And every year I do get through it. Albeit battered, bruised, and emotionally tired, I get through it. 

The words of a former college roommate annually replay in my mind at this time of the year. Over twenty years ago he and I were discussing our lives then since I was a teacher and he was a CPA. He said to me, "I envy you, because [your job] has a distinct beginning, middle, and end. My job is a constant series of projects." In my early years of teaching, I did not quite understand his statement, but now as I get older and gain more life experience, I truly treasure his words, because they ring truth.

I do not know if non-teachers understand why teachers need a summer vacation. It is so that we can put closure on the past school year. It is so that we have time away from students. It is so that we can heal and re-energize for when students return. It is so that we do not have to be teachers and can focus back on ourselves.

As always. this summer I am looking forward to not being Keith Toda, teacher, or Keith Toda, department head. I can simply just be Keith Toda. For a few weeks I will be Keith Toda, coach, at the Acquisition Academy in June and CI Summit in July, and Keith Toda, strand guide at the Fluency Matters Conference (so if you are at any of these, please say hi!). Outside of those three commitments, I will have no professional responsibilities, can just stay under the radar without any titles/designations, and can deteriorate - I hope you will do the same!

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