The beginning of summer is upon us! For many, this is a time of celebration and excitement—as we watch our students transition and graduate. As we prepare to take a break from the pace and rhythm of the school year, it is easy to simply go leaping into the summer without really intentionally closing the school year. However, when we take time to reflect on our year and take stock of how we’ve grown and changed, we are more able to acknowledge the gifts of this passage and harvest our own learning for the future.
Below are a few questions for self-reflection. You may wish to journal on some of these questions or to find a colleague and interview each other, using these questions as a guide. Alternatively, based on the following questions, you may wish to write yourself a letter to be opened just before the next school year begins.
Reflection Questions (Exploring the Dimension of the Self-Observer):
- What can you truly celebrate about this last school year?
- Write down 5 single words that describe this last year. OR What newspaper headline would describe this last year?
- Where did you grow? Where were you challenged? What were your learning “edges”?
- What students will you miss and why?
- What three memories, images, or snapshots really stand out from the year?
- What surprised you this last school year?
- What did you learn this year that is essential to remember for next year?
- What would you really like to focus on and work on next year?
- What specific practices helped you stay on track this year that you’d like to continue on with next year?
- Write down one-two sentences of inspiration for yourself. Consider posting these in your classroom next year. (You can consider this a “wisdom quote” from yourself to yourself.)
- Find one quote, poem, or book passage that feels deeply relevant to you know as you close out this school year. Read it, post it, and continue to return to it.
- Who do you really appreciate from this last year? Who made a difference in your school year? Write this down on a notecard and share this with this person.
- What is one thing this summer you can do to stretch yourself beyond where you have gone before?
- What newspaper headline describes the kind of year you are wishing and intending to create next year?
All of us at PassageWorks wish you a wonderful summer!