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My Summer Holiday Planner Progress; 10 things I planned to do and how I’ve got on…

With only a week and a half left of the Summer holiday, I’ve rejuvenated enough to be able to summarise how I’ve got on with my Summer holiday planner; not quite as far ahead as it should be but I’m happy with the progress so far..

  1. Rest

Thought I’d start with this one because, after another intense teaching year, I really couldn’t much else. So I devoted two whole weeks in my Summer holiday planner to resting and recharging that ended up being 4! If you have been doing teaching or supply teaching full time and plan to do the same starting in September, make sure you’ve used some of this Summer holiday to rest. Do nothing, truly relish in switching yourself off completely as well as your alarms. Don’t feel guilty about rest time and lie-ins! Teaching is an intense job and we need to take time out for the mind and body to rest and recover!

  1. Prepare for the new academic year

One job I often end up leaving to the end of my Summer holiday planner is to prepare for the new academic year and this is my definite ‘to do’ job focus this week. Do the little things that will take time in September. If you have a full time position planned, spend some time updating your planner with your new timetable and finding out about your new students and any medical or educational needs. You may have assessments, projects, extension or support ideas in mind to plan and doing this when you are relaxed in the Summer holidays will save you time and stress later. Plan any displays or routines you want to establish with the new students. You might want to review your management of behavior and sanctions and rewards you intend to use.  Use this time to update your CV and add any additional positions and experience you have gained over the year. You may have completed additional training with your school or supply agency. We at Kent Supply Teachers offer training to all of our supply teachers.

  1. Organise home life.

All of these jobs were in the Summer holiday planner and I am pleased to say they are done!

Children’s uniform and new work outfits – bought ✓

Dog grooming and spaying – booked ✓

Signed up for online shopping for regular items and weekly list produced ✓

Dental and Optician check ups – done ✓

MOT complete and car servicing ✓

Dinner delivery service signed up to ✓

Progress going well for life chore completion so far; the aim is to get routines established so September is as automated as possible and home life ticks along smoothly this new academic year…

I’ve found that dinner delivery services and having regular groceries delivered can be a great help; these dinner delivery companies deliver fresh ingredients and step-by-step recipe cards to your door and time not only shopping but in thinking up ideas for dinner.  Other home admin jobs might involve arranging any childcare or pet sitters or ensuring any bills are sorted and letters responded to and you’ve used the time to sort and organize your home admin.

  1. Tidy up your digital life.

I always find my digital life hard to keep on top of when the academic year is in full swing and end up with hundreds of emails, many from automated email subscriptions.  An annual clean up of my digital life really does make a difference.

Still not so far with this one which was to empty all inboxes for work and personal emails and unsubscribe from newsletters that I’ve never read!  I struggle to remember passwords and often find myself wasting time online or on the phone resetting them, so I’m quite pleased that I’ve set myself up with a password manager that should hopefully solve this problem.  Keeper and Lastpass are some great examples although there are lots out there to choose from.

  1. Home Improvements

During the teaching term It’s hard to focus on those home improvements or DIY projects. Even just time for a spring clean is a luxury and always incredibly rewarding making you feel back in control of your home. I always find it really helps to have a space to work in at home so have taken the time this year to make the shed into a Summer house to use as an office.  If you don’t have a space for a desk anywhere, think outside the box for creating one! Depending on your house layout, under the stairs is a solution one of my teacher friends; a great use of space.  I also have friends who have used companies that offer some very impressive summer house solutions…

Painting the kitchen skirting boards and finishing the garden is still on the to do list..

  1. Take time to visit family and friends

I find it really difficult during term time to keep in contact with family and friends and this leaves me feeling really guilty. While I can, I’ve been making time for visits, nights out and plan trips or days visits with those you don’t get to see that often; I spread these across the Summer holiday planner this year.  This really does do wonders for the soul! Keep in touch with your colleagues from work too really helps; it will help when the start of the academic year begins again that you have links there.

  1. Earn more

A big focus over this holiday and one that might be particularly important for supply teachers is how we can earn more. Many teachers I know of have a side hustle.  For myself its been tutoring and a few website services.   If you have the time and feel well-rested, there are lots of ways of making some additional money in the Summer holiday. Try some of these, selling your teaching resources, Nursery or Community Care work, sell Usbourne books, Become a Prison educator or adult educator, tutoring, beauty products consultant, write an eBook on a subject or hobby, create an online course, teach a skill, sell products on Amazon, be a social media manager, a Facebook Ads Manager, Information Product Reseller, Ad-hoc customer service live chat agent, or a mystery shopper. You can find out more on this recent blog post, 20 ways of making money over the Summer holidays.

  1. Learn More

Quite often, as teachers who passionate about our subjects, we fail to get the time to build up our own learning. There are not only changes in the syllabus to keep up with but also changes and progress in our own subject areas too. Relish the time to read a new book, go on trips or visits or attend conferences or lectures. I’ve enjoyed being able to collect and jot down interesting facts I want to share with my students in lessons and through your displays.  I’m planning to do lots more of this in the next week!

  1. Reflect and evaluate

So often we ask the students to do this but very rarely do we take the time out to do this ourselves. It’s a great time when you’re relaxed to think about your strengths and weaknesses and make at least one new year academic resolution to keep to; what will I do differently in the New Year. Maybe plan some new strategies for behavior management? Perhaps devise some easy to use pupil centered tasks making some they work harder than you as a teacher in the Classroom!

  1. Be You!

One of the best bits of the holidays is taking time out to be me! Be yourself and do the things you enjoy in life. Maybe you have hobbies or interests you rarely get the time to pursue during term time. Perhaps there’s a hobby that you’ve always been interested in? Read a book, sign up for workshops, join online courses. I’m loving the extra time I’ve got to take my dog on long country walks and attending music festivals without the worry of the work that needs to be done. Visit garden centers, visit interesting places, have long lunches and relaxed conversations. Really embrace the time you have over the long Summer holiday to focus on the things that make you happy! You deserve it.

20 ways of making money in the Summer

A Level Results Day 2019; What happens next?

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A level results day is this Thursday 15th August 2019

What happens next?

Students will be collecting their A level results this Thursday and finding out where they are heading next. Many will be accepted into their chosen university course.  For others, some doors may close if they don’t get their expected results but many others will open and there are still many options for these students.

Schools will open early in the morning on Thursday for A Level results day for students to collect their results. The exam boards publish results from 6am.

Grade boundaries and UMS converters will also be available on exam board websites.

UCAS, the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service will update their systems at 8am on Thursday so that students can review the courses on which they have been accepted. An unconditional offer means that a student has already been accepted.

If a student had not been accepted on a particular course, the UCAS system may also show an alternative offer which will show as a changed course offer.

What if A Level results day doesn’t go as planned?

Some students will unfortunately not be successful in their chosen courses and may want to consider clearing.

Clearing is the process UCAS uses to match applicants to university places that are yet to be filled and is another opportunity for those who have not got the grades required for their preferred course. This is done through the UCAS system and the application can be completed online.

It is also important to remember that a university or college course is not the only option for your future. Employment and apprenticeships or even starting your own business are all up for consideration too and you should consider carefully which is the right choice for you.

Best of Luck to all of those with their A level results this year!

GCSE results day is next Thursday 22nd August 2019.