Thursday, July 9, 2015

Living in a Calamity : Demystifying the Summer Vacation

When you're a teacher educator, you put up with a lot of sh*t. This may include but is certainly not limited to: disinterested students, disillusioned coworkers, snow days, making-up snow days, the Common Core curriculum*, the general public's lack of regard for students with disabilities and, on some very special days, actual and legitimate fecal know, sh*t.

But I think the biggest frustration we all deal with is our very own out-of-the-education-field friends reminding us how easy we have it, because we get snow days, and vacations, and SUMMERS off. And you now what? Yeah. When you look at it from that excruciatingly narrow lens, it totally is a great gig.

So I'm not here to pontificate or justify all the great things and hard work that goes into a school year, plenty of other more eloquent people have done that for me. Instead, I'm going to tell you how we're spending that time, if to serve no other purpose than to give the rest of you something to read when you get out of your 12-month job tonight.

 Without further ado...

What Teachers [who are also dancers] Do During Summer! 

*Meghan loves the Common Core. Especially #1 in the Math Practices! OMG!


I recently visited my brother and his family in Florida. While of course we can travel during our mid-year breaks, it's a tad easier to travel during the summer, and the likelihood of running into your students in the airport vastly decreases. See, when all the [public] schools in Massachusetts go on vacation at the same time, travel prices skyrocket. (Though, when your older brother lives in “The Happiest Place on Earth” tickets are pretty steadfast at astronomical.) I'm also taking advantage of mid-week bus pricing as I cart my heart to and from New York City. Meghan is currently in the midst of three weeks in Park City Utah, which is an exciting, novel experience for her and a sad, lonesome one for me. Additionally, Meghan goes on a charming yearly trip with her high school friends. While in years past they have rented a house down the Cape, this year they are braving the great north -Lake George!

Park City, Moootah. Not Pictured: Meghan.


I really hope this comes as no surprise. Meghan performed with JAE at the top of the summer as a part of sweet Somerville's Dancing in the Streets Festival. While in Utah she has taken it upon herself to create a dance studio in the gym facility, and even proctored a modern dance class to her fellow math-enthusiasts. As for me, I'm rehearsing with Luminarium (with occasional performances scattered throughout, obviously will keep you posted.) Both of us are preparing work for upcoming Calamities. DON'T YOU EVEN WORRY.


Today, I did something that I have done maybe one or two times before. I took a yoga class. My very sweet, warm friend Katie McGrail taught a beautiful class this morning at The Breathing Room in Harvard Square. It was pretty new to me (as new as a true yoga class can be for a dancer) but I left invigorated physically and mentally. I was proud of myself for taking the time to attempt something foreign, which for me, would not have been as easy to do in the throes of the school year. Meghan is exploring Utah.


I need a physical and my brake pads need to be replaced. I'm also scheduled for a teeth cleaning in August. I also have a LOT of laundry to do. Will be Instagramming these adventures, so follow along as you like.


Yeah. I'll admit it. I can't help it. I don't pretend to be anyone's hero but I hope the ones that need to feel cared about know that they're still cared about, even if I'm not there to ask them to “use respectful language” and “please not play basketball in the library.”


 If you're Meghan Riling, you go to Park City, Utah to do math. That's right. Meghan went to Utah to add, divide, and think about things like variables and, I'm sorry to say, fractions. Meghan loves math, guys. She like, really loves math. Similarly, I (along with several of my coworkers) am taking a self-directed course (for college-level credit) on curriculum planning for next school year. In other words...I am paying money to prepare myself for September. On paper, I'm prepping materials and activities for students. In practice, I'm hanging out with my coworkers and chatting casually about how we're going to keep ourselves sane from the next September to June. I imagine anything I produce will be extremely boring to anyone who is out of the field, but if you're interested in hearing about my tortilla-themed cooking group, I am VERY eager to share.

Meghan and math items. Not pictured: ME! =(

And finally...


Happy hard-earned summer to all you educators and non-educators alike, =)

P.S. - Plz share your plans or invite us to hang out in the comments section!


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