Well fellow teachers here it comes. You cannot prevent it; it comes about the same time every year. It has been enjoyable for me, sleeping in, little vacations, peace and quite, but in a few short weeks it will be back to school time. It is a love and hate type relationship. I look so forward to being back at school, seeing friends, and my students, but by the end of summer I have grown fat, lazy, and liking it.
Back to school is also a big change for the body, and a vulnerable time to get sick, so here are nine health tips for teachers to keep them at the top of their game.
(1) Adjust your schedule
If you have been waking up all summer about the time you would normally start working. Use the last few weeks of summer to slowly adjust back to a school schedule. A sudden change in schedule is not good for the body and makes you susceptible to illness. Begin going to bed and getting up a little earlier each day so that you are back to your school schedule before school actually begins.
(2) Get enough Sleep
Related obviously to the first tip, but many people just do not get enough sleep. Each individual is different, but on average you need a good 8 hours sleep. This is especially critical during the first few weeks of school as this is a time that teachers often get sick.
(3) Find time to Relax
Going back to school is a stressful time. Things at school will have changed, teachers and students have left, 100 new student names to learn, your schedule may be different, I could go on for pages. Find a way to relieve stress each day. People employ a variety of ways to relieve stress; meditate, exercise, yoga, and all are excellent. Find something that works for you and stick with it each day.
(4) Eat a good breakfast
My mother told me this 40 years ago, and it is still true. You need to eat a good breakfast every morning to get your day going. If not you will hit that wall around 10:00 every morning. Teachers have you ever noticed those students in 2nd or 3rd period who are falling a sleep? Could it be breakfast?
(5) Practice good hygiene and germ control
Every teacher should have anti-bacterial gel, lotion and wipes available at all times. Go wash you hands completely a couple of times a day, and if you have a chance a good wiping down of the desks every day cannot hurt. You will be exposed to more germs in a classroom then at The Centers for Disease Control. OK, I cannot prove that, but it is many germs, so clean.
(6) Take a moment to escape
I teach high school so really only know the routine at that level, but I would imagine junior high and elementary school teachers must be machines to handle the day. I have 4 minutes between classes to get ready, some periods I need to change rooms, students come in at lunch to catch up, and my prep always seems t disappear. Try to find a few minutes each day to escape from the kids. This does not mean you do not love them; it is just good to talk to adults sometimes. I get out of my room each day during lunch or prep to talk to a friend, and relax for 5 minutes. This may be the biggest health tip of all.
Also, avoid Mr. Negative. You do not need to go complain or vent about other teachers, administrators, or students, this is to be a positive time.
(7) Avoid the teachers lounge at lunch
I love back to school time, all those people bringing in snacks, treats, baked goods. I gain 5 pounds every fall, but this year let us try to stay away from it.
We all know what this is about; the average person does not get enough exercise. Exercise will help keep weight off, build your body’s immune system, relieve stress, protect your heart, and much more. It is the magic pill take it once a day, or at least 3-4 times a week.
(9) Comfortable shoes
Take last years pair and use them for yard work. Find a good pair or two of comfortable shoes that still look good enough to pass dress code, and for you not to be teased by the students. Most teachers stand for most of the day and you will feel it at the end of the day.