Vacation = Work

I've known teachers to use their vacation time to catch up on work

Photo of Charles Shryock, IV
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While I was reading this post from Lee Boyes,  it occurred to me that I know many, many teachers who have taken a day off school to catch up on grading. 

These are dedicated, focused, effective educators who still find the demands of their job too extensive to finish while they are actually at work.

There is something seriously wrong with this. 

It also reminded me of this terrific article on the benefits of "collective restoration" -- which is when everyone in a community takes vacation at the same time. Its author, Brigid Schulte, wrote Overwhelmed: Work, Love, and Play When No One Has the Time, another terrific resource for exploring the challenges of work-life balance. 

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Take a day off!

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Photo of John Faig

Teachers spend too much time sacrificing their down time because education (as an industry) has invested the least amount in technology to improve teacher productivity (at least in relation to increased expectations).

Photo of Charles Shryock, IV

That's an interesting claim. Certainly there are many wonderful tools to improve productivity -- worth exploring further.

Photo of John Faig

@Charles,
Schools have investing in Student Information Systems, but this doesn't save teachers much time. There are lots of new apps and websites for students, but this doesn't help teachers much. IMHO, the key to boosting productivity is academic systems (math, reading, writing, vocabulary, foreign language) that automatically collects data on each student. This way, teachers might not feel like they have to grade every piece of student work. I suggest peer review before the teacher grades it because teachers will grade a more refined work product. Teachers could take a page out of the US FDA and grade samples or a subset of the work product. If students are not going to revise the product, why grade it in its entirety? Grade a sample.

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