Getting all the love and freebies from Teacher Appreciation Week is great, no doubt about that, but what happens during the rest of the year? How are you, as an educator, taking care of yourself in mind, body and spirit?
We’ve gathered some unique resources that can help sustain health and wellness on those tough teaching days and build mindfulness throughout the year. Tell us your favorite ways to destress in the comments.
Join the revolution! Originally created by a group of teachers in Baltimore, Maryland, The Happy Teacher Revolution builds networks of teachers around the country, which then offer trained health and wellness support specifically for educators. Having a supportive, social framework can keep you from feeling isolated in difficult periods and offer tools for combating burnout.
You may have heard of this popular app, which instructs users in meditation and mindfulness techniques, but did you know it is free for teachers and their students? The app creators understand the stress and pressure that goes into teaching and have committed to making the subscription version free for any K-12 teacher in the world. Just head to the Calm Schools Initiative page and fill out the initial survey, and you can start using the app at home and in the classroom.
3. Stretching, Breathing, Believing
Yoga is a great stress reliever, and there are a growing number of organizations out there that recognize the benefits for teachers and students in particular. Yoga4Classrooms offers in school workshops and leadership development programs. Breathe for Change does both school workshops and a reduced priced instructor training for educators. If you don’t have time for a full course, here are 10 easy yoga poses designed to help calm you.
Pinterest, in its own way, can trigger stress – how did they get that classroom looking so immaculate?! – but it also offers a ton of great resources for teachers. Browse the selections of self-care check lists, find the one that’s right for you and print out on a weekly basis. The simple act of tracking your behavior can help you feel more accomplished, even if the task at hand is as simple as remembering to hydrate.
On the toughest days, it can be really hard to find the motivation to keep working in education. For those times, we recommend taking a breath, putting on headphones and listening to some Ted Talks from some inspiring individuals. From Rita Pierson’s unforgettable “Every Kid Needs a Champion” to the emotional depths of Ziauddin Yousafzai’s “My Daughter, Malala“, these pieces will grant you new perspective and make those hard days a little easier.
6. De-stressing Tips
Sometimes it helps to hear advice straight from the field! We’ve pulled several threads and posts together from trusted educational resources for when you’re in need of quick tips on destressing, making the most of your free time and overcoming burnout.
- Fighting Teacher Depression and Anxiety
- Ways to Unwind on the Weekend
- Edutopia’s Teacher Wellness Center
- Teacher Wellness Tips
Save yourself some time for self-care by downloading our ready-made lesson plans for the classroom!