Regardless of what you call it, winter breakÂ (or theÂ Christmas holiday) is a wonderful time!Â Right now, the two weeks out of school stretch before me like an empty canvas.Â How will I spend my remainingÂ days out ofÂ school?Â I’m obsessive/compulsive. So I have a list:
(1) Get my name changed.Â Since I got married in September, I’ve put off changing my name.Â It is such a hassle.Â However, I want to have the same last name as R.T.Â So I will go through the required rigamarole.Â It is a tedious and long process.Â Last Friday I took care of my social security card.Â Later this week I will handle my drivers license.Â Then I will have a marathon letter-writing session and send notices to everyone else (banks, credit cards, my employer, etc.) who must change my name on their records.Â Of course then I must notify my friends and make the announcement when I return to school in January.Â Children and co-workers will have to change what they call me.Â (Yes, I can think of some jokes with that last , but I won’t go there.)
(2) Get my old clunker car inspected and get a new tag for it.Â However, before doing that I will have to get it started.Â As of this moment, the battery is dead - deader’n a doornail.Â Then once that is done, I will either sell it or give it away.Â It’s worth a few hundred dollars - atÂ most.
(3) Get repairs done to my not-as-old car.Â The trunk latch doesn’t work, the back taillight is out, and the CD-changer stopped working.
(4) Visit my mother for a couple days.
(5) De-clutter RT’s and my house. . . or at least one or two rooms. . . or at least a closet or maybe a drawer - something will be de-cluttered before school starts again.
Those things will get done.Â I’ll also have a chance to sleep late in the mornings and generally feel renewed and ready to face the challenges of teaching by January 8th when school starts again.Â It’s a good thing to have a few weekdays in which to take care of personal business and to rejuvenate.
And thinking about all that made me think about a “balanced calendar.”Â A balanced calendar is when students attend school for nine weeks, then school is out for two or three weeks, then another nine weeks of school, then another two or three break, etc.Â That makes so much sense to me.Â Children and teachers would still attend school the same amount of days/time.Â However, there wouldn’t be that long, long break during the summer.Â Instead, the breaks would be spread throughout the year.Â Summer break is nice, but it’s too long and it’s too hot.
Our school system considered going to a balanced calendar recently, and groups of parents basically shot down the idea.Â I think their objections had to do mostly with high school sports programming.Â I was disappointed that we didn’t give it a try.Â
Having these two weeks off - even with all the Christmas activities packed in them - make me realize anew how wonderful it is to have time off to recharge.