Inside Higher Ed just posted this helpful article for educators regarding how to make the most of summer vacation. I am already taking stock in some of what is proposed in the article, namely to do most of the prep work for the fall in the early part of the summer, including syllabus revisions or new course development. The article theorizes that doing this in the beginning of the summer will declutter the mind and leave more time for writing and research during the rest of the summer. In addition, the article also suggests keeping a shadow syllabus throughout the semester to write down what worked and didn’t work in a class, so changes can be made early in the summer, while the comments are still fresh. I have never kept a shadow syllabus, but I do take notes regarding what worked and didn’t work, especially if I need to change an exam or change some of the readings, based on student response.
Lastly, the article stresses the importance of setting realistic goals for writing and publishing and ensuring to plan vacation time to reset and recharge the batteries. It’s worth a read! Anyone else have any helpful suggestions regarding how to make the best use of summer?