When I was a teacher, I remember vividly those last few weeks before school let out. Exams, graduations, end of the year parties, packing up my classroom, then, finally, the last day of school! I remember looking forward to sleeping in a couple of days, before starting school or my summer job. Ahhhhh. Summer.
When I became an administrator and had to work through the summer, I was still excited at the end of the year. I could come into work an hour later, sit in my office, and actually get some work done! Plus, we spent a lot of time planning big things for the coming school year.
One of the things I didn’t do a lot of was reflect on the past year. I figured that I could do that in August when I returned to school. So, I’d put the past year behind me and immediately began thinking about the summer ahead or the upcoming school year.
But here’s the thing. Without taking time to reflect first, my plans for the coming school year were already doomed because they were uninformed by the valuable lessons I’d learned.
So, before you kick back and take a much-needed break for the summer, I want to encourage you to take some time to reflect on the past school year. Spend an hour or even a half-day looking back at all that you’ve learned this school year while those lessons are still relatively fresh. That way, you won’t forget the most valuable things you’ve learned and you are less likely to repeat your mistakes next school year.
Here are 10 questions to use in your reflection:
Once you've reflected, we want to know: what are the big lessons you've learned this year? Share them below.