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Returning from a Sabbatical
Tips collected by Naomi Epstein
Illustrations by Alice Lurio Axelbank

Sabbaticals are wonderful things - they give us teachers a chance to rest, expand our horizons and remember what it is like to be a student again. Most teachers find it a "re-energizing experience".

Returning from a sabbatical can sometimes be somewhat disorienting. Here are some tips from ETNI members to help smooth the way:

Get very organized before
Sept. 1 so you don't feel more
disoriented at the beginning of
the year than usual.
Go out to coffee with
a colleague and pick his or
her brain for school gossip
so you don't go back
feeling totally out of place.
Take a lighter workload
for the first year back.
Try to get the lists of kids'
names so you can
familiarize yourself with
them - you won't have
anyone from "last year!" -
It'll be a whole new lot!
Watch some inspirational
movies like "Dead Poet's
Society" or "To Sir With
Love", etc.
Plan to implement
something new, something
you hadn't done in
previous years (such as
having a class website or
trying new drama
Remember why you chose to
be a teacher in the first place!

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