Ripples & Reflections

"Learning is about living, and as such is lifelong." Elkjaer.

The Year to Come

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Lunch by the Waterfront. Gotta keep physically and mentally balanced this year.

Lunch by the Waterfront. Gotta keep physically and mentally balanced this year.

Team Taylor arrived in Japan a year ago yesterday, and what a year it has been. We have been warmly welcomed by new friends and colleagues and CA has proven to be a great place to work and live. We have a quality of life that we have not had before, though we do still miss family and friends in Indonesia.

The new year will bring new challenges, so I spent a moment last night (alas – the sleeplessness has returned!) reflecting. We have a good life here, personally and professionally, so I need to set goals to make the most of it. 

Living on campus with two young kids has allowed us to have much more family time, and it’s been great. Although I do spend a fair amount of my time in school working on my MA or school tasks, we have had a better balance than in the past. I need to make the effort to make this continue: get home at a reasonable time each evening and protect at least one full day from each weekend, without school or digital distractions. We’ve been out and about, seeing some of the wonderful sights of Japan, and we aim to do more trips in the coming year.

This last few weeks, partly inspired by the Olympics, partly by hating not being as fit as I used to be, I have been getting the heart rate up, hoping to establish good habits before the school year kicks in. New swimming gear, lots of laps at the RICL pool and a freshly-serviced bike with road tires. I totally failed to make exercise a priortity in 2011-12, but it’s amazing the positive mental and physical health boost of being active. I still hate running, but that might change. If I falter, I only need to remind myself that next summer we’ll be in France at a campsite with a speedos-only pool and some decent surf!

With the new MYP Co role, as well as my classes to teach, professional life will be exciting. I’m looking forward to working with my colleagues here on developing the fledgling MYP further and preparing for the Next Chapter. I’ll stay connected through my Twitter and OCC contacts and try to bring much of the summer reading on curriculum and science-teaching pedagogy into my classes. To make sure I’m available to everyone who needs help, attention or support I’m going to need to become super focused and get my own work done efficiently and without fuss. This will probably mean early nights and very early mornings! I’ll take a break from MA work while I settle into this role, and get on a new unit in March (better get this next assignment done by the end of August).

We’ll be writing professional goals in the coming few weeks (last year’s are here), so I’ll post in more detail on those later.

Roll on 2012-13!

 

Author: Stephen

Director of Learning & MYP Coordinator at Canadian Academy, Kobe, Japan. Formerly MYP HS Science & IBDP Bio teacher and missing it terribly. Twitterist (@sjtylr), dad and bloggerer.

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