Nourishment When You Transition to Online Education
Over the past few days the mantra that my grandfather used frequently when he talked with us about our grades and study habits continually plays through my mind “They can take away your homes, they can take away your cars, they can take away your jobs, but they can never take away your education.” I never knew who they were, and I never asked. And, I certainly didn’t understand his wisdom then like I understand it now.
As I see posts and media updates, it is apparent that many of us have a high level of concern about the situation in our world and I understand. Keep in mind that your students are hearing and seeing some of the same things that you are and most likely that will manifest itself in higher anxiety and their level of focus may be compromised. Moving forward, consider spending this time reflecting on the gifts you have been given and ask your students to do the same. Then nurture those gifts and make this shift in an incredible way. You might surprise yourself and find that you come out stronger than you ever thought you could be.
So, let’s talk nourishment.
Physical and spiritual nourishment are going to serve you well as an online educator and really in most capacities in your life.
You can get started on this now.
Prepare healthy snacks that you can quickly grab between phone calls, meetings, and between your live lesson times. Remember most of you have your own children at home and I have seen some neat ways to organize food in homes, so that children have what they need, but are not overindulging. However, you choose to do this in your home is up to you, but you should eat about every 3 hours. You will need to keep up your stamina to stay engaged and more productive. We don’t realize that many times when we grow tired it is because we are either hungry or thirsty or both.
This could be a huge shift for some educators, as many of us barely eek out a lunch during the day much less eating every 3 hours. And, sometimes we get to the end of the day and realize we have not had anything to drink since our coffee at 6 am.
So, let’s get started on reframing our mind and…
Grab a water bottle and put it next to you. Then drink it. Then grab another one and drink that one too.
Then grab a snack – a small quantity a ¼ - ½ cup:
Beef jerky - Chicken salad - Mixed nuts - Hardboiled eggs - Pork Rinds – Strawberries – Blueberries – Blackberries – Cheese Cubes – Sliced Cucumbers – Carrots – Celery – Watermelon – Pineapple – Cantaloupe
So, now we are taking better care of ourselves and living a healthier life physically. Let’s move onto our spiritual nourishment.
Teaching requires a tremendous amount of strength, discipline, diplomacy and grit (at points the strength and discipline to grit your teeth) 😉
Nourishing your soul becomes particularly important. Prayer and meditation are extremely important and a wonderful benefit to being in an online work environment. You can more easily bow your head in prayer for a moment or take 5 minutes to read and reflect on a meditation or both. Nourishing your soul though is even more than that. It is about learning how to work the things that you love into your normal day, into your normal routine.
Turn on your favorite tunes and let them play in the background while you grade or return emails.
Lately, I have found much enjoyment in letting light background music play in my headphones while I talk on the phone with my students and even in meetings. I am the only one who can hear it and it seems to make the conversations lighter and the meetings that can sometimes feel like they drag on to be more delightful.
Read an article about something that you enjoy or want to learn more about.
Here are a couple to get you started Keep Sharing the Love by Jennifer Frnka or Re-Informing a Misinformed Female Lifter about Strength Training by Robert Santana.
Watch a quick funny clip.
Here’s one to get you started Speak Out
Write a note of thanks to a colleague.
This can be a short, quick note that let’s them know how much you appreciate them.
Read an excerpt from a motivational or inspirational book.
A Short Guide to a Happy Life by Anna Quindlen or FISH by Stephen C. Lundin, Harry Paul, and John Christensen is a great place to start.
So, I end with words from Ms. Quindlen “…remember that love is not leisure, it is work. Each time I look at my diploma, I remember that I am still a student, still learning every day how to be human.”
Tomorrow we will take a closer look at the strength and discipline teaching from home requires vs teaching in a traditional classroom.
Have a beautiful day ya’ll!