It’s already been 2.5 weeks of summer! It has gone by fast. The weekends are filled with hiking, long walks, trips, and visiting local spots. The weekends are jammed packed, mostly because I’m spending time with my husband who is go-go-go. We went to Yosemite right after it re-opened. It was both our first time there and it was amazing. Pictures just cannot capture what you see in person. Over the next three weekends we are going on two road-trips to national parks and must-see spots. With more places and restaurants reopening since Coronavirus attacked in March, we’re eager to do as much as possible.
Part of my summer plans include a cross country road trip! Whew! I love going cross country! You get to see so much like the people, and the land as it transitions moving east and west. There are a few major spots we’re planning to visit along the way. At this point, there are also a lot of days and nights that are unaccounted for. We’re trying to plan out the drive and the overnight stops as much as possible. With the Coronavirus restrictions in place in many places, we need to be cautious. Some businesses have not reopened, so we want to make sure of all of that ahead of time. We’re also going to try to do some camping.
I have some priorities this summer. For one, I am in the process of renewing my PMP credential. I received it in 2013 when I was a project manager overseeing testing for pharmaceutical companies. It requires that I complete and document 60 hours of learning related to project management. It is very time consuming and can feel draining because I do a lot of it over the summer, but I feel great when it’s done. After I renew my PMP, I’ve learned so much and I have ideas about my career and new paths to explore. It is, however, a lot of work and it definitely cuts into my chill time.
Chill time is so important over the summer. Usually at this time I am still exhausted from the school year, needing lots of extra rest. This year is a little different because I was working from home from March until June. At this time I also usually travel back east to visit my family. Just after getting to slow down from the school year, I pack whatever I can that I might need in the next 4 weeks and take a pricey flight to the east coast. As much as I loved going back to my childhood home and spending time with my parents, I didn’t have my car, or my things, or my life, and I never felt like I could truly settle into my summer break. For the first time, I have my summer mostly off, and this is the way to do it! Chilling is very important over the summer and this looks like relaxing, watching movies, taking walks, and taking naps. I will do all four of these in a day! When I do these things I feel like I am recharging my batteries.
Another priority of mine this summer is to get ahead for next year. I’m not sure yet what I’ll be teaching, so I won’t get started on any specific lesson plans. I do want to design a first week of school lesson plan. This would include an introduction about me, the class, as well as some icebreakers and community building. I also have needed for several years a Tools and Techniques of Science unit for the beginning of the year. Here I can introduce a lot of the systems in my class like notetaking, group roles, one pagers, and article summaries. I would like to introduce CER at the beginning of the year this way too, and make sure to spiral back to it with every experiment and investigation. I need to really look at which types of measurement we will use throughout the year to make this unit relevant and something that I can also spiral in throughout the year.
When I’m designing these lessons, I need to think about next year. Will we be in the classroom? Will we be learning from home, like we were from March until June? I will need to plan for both scenarios. Although I still have weeks ahead of me this summer, it feels like it’s slipping away. I am enjoying my chill time, and I feel like I need to accomplish something every day. I’m meeting up with some teacher friends of mine in a few days. I want to check in with them and how they are enjoying their summers. I ran into one of my friends over the weekend at the end of our 10 miles hike through the forest. It seems he’s enjoying his summer too, although I can’t wait to find out for sure!
These are some pictures from last summer on my roadtrip honeymoon across the USA. Some highlights were Pike’s Peak in Colorado; the World’s Largest Czech Egg in Wilson, Kansas; Glenwood Hot Springs in Colorodo; and Monument Valley in Arizona. I’ll post pictures from my 2020 summer adventures this year! It will certainly be different due to Coronavirus, but I’m looking forward to seeing more of this amazing country. Stay safe, everyone!
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