California Educator

August/September 2023

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Page 18 of 71

" Learn to be flexible. No pencils? Pair share and take oral answers. Whiteboard marker dead? Find a crayon or pencil. No paper today? Oral pair share. In my 23 years I've probably experienced it all. No internet? No lights? They happen every year. Find a book. Go outside. Make it work." — MACKENZIE FERREIRA, sixth grade teacher, Los Banos Teachers Association " After 27 years of teaching, I have come to the conclusion that what is best for my mental health is to put my school bag in another room when I get home at the end of the day. I no longer feel that I must open my bag in the evening, and I take comfort in knowing that it is there for me if (and only if) I want to get it later. A lot of teachers say "Don't take work home with you". I agree and I don't feel guilty if I don't do anything at home." — JENNIFER DEWEERDT, fourth grade teacher, Martinez Education Association " Keep to your contract time as much as possible. If you must work on something, create boundaries like don't stay more than a half hour late (set a timer), don't take work home or absolutely no work on the weekends. Put after-hours auto-notifications on all parent communication. Don't put school mail or apps on your personal devices." — SARAH VIERRA, elementary school teacher, Los Banos Teachers Association " Schedule and plan time for yourself, whether that be an enjoyable activity or exercise class weekly, a coffee date with a friend, or planning a trip for that next three -day weekend or break! Our 'to- do' lists are impossible to complete but become even more overbearing when we don't take time to focus on ourselves." — CHRISTINE PINGOL, first grade teacher, Irvine Teachers Association " Prep five days of sub plans in advance and put them where your admin can easily find them. You never know when a surprise will keep you away." — WHITNEY WEDDELL, continuation high school teacher, Kern High School Teachers Association " Find out which digital tools are available and which your district may try to discontinue. Sacramento City Unified leadership was going to discontinue a district license for an online supplemental program because their interpretation of the numbers made it seem unwarranted, when several teachers are still using it and want it to stay." — MARY RODRIGUEZ, high school special education teacher, Sacramento City Teachers Association What self-care tips do you have for educators to help make it through the long year? 17 A U G U S T / S E P T E M B E R 2 0 2 3

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