The past few weeks have undoubtedly been stressful for you as a teacher as you navigate trying to decipher if or when your school might be shut down, wonder whether you or your students have been exposed to a virus, and balance the ever delicate relationship between work and home life.
Whether you are teaching general music with young children, are directing an advanced high school ensemble, or anything in between, you are having to think about more and different aspects of your work life than you have ever had to think about before—how important is e-learning as a music teacher? Are my students going to be safe? How long will this crisis last? What will my everyday schedule look like now?
Taking care of yourself—body, mind, and spirit—is of the utmost importance so that you can keep yourself in good shape for you, your family, and your students.
For your body—especially at a time like this—consider these few questions:
- Am I eating healthy?
- Am I exercising?
- Am I sleeping well?
Your body is your temple. This is the time when many of us have given up on our well-intentioned New Year’s Resolutions, so maybe during this uncertain time you inspire yourself to try to eat a little more healthy, a little less processed, and a little more thoughtfully.
The COVID-19 virus is passed person-to-person, so maybe use this time of crisis to spend a little more time outside, at a safe distance from others (6 feet is recommended). Go for a walk! Try a new nature trail. Visit a local or state park that you have been wanting to check out. You can also work out right at home—there are so many workouts available for free online. Try one of the 10-20 minute yoga classes from “Yoga by Adriene” on YouTube or try a 30-day free trial of workout sites like The Daily Burn.
Here are a few resources for BODY:
- 10 Ideas to Get You and Your Child Exploring Outdoors
- 10 Thoughts That Inspire Healthier Eating
- Yoga With Adriene
- Daily Burn
An inspired person makes an inspired teacher! Consider exploring interests that you have, even if you don’t want to leave the house. The Berlin Philharmonic Digital Concert Hall has granted 30 days of free access to their online performances. Many museums have online visits that you can take. There are copious online courses of studies that you can take without even paying a penny. Libraries have audiobooks that you can check out from the comfort of your own couch, and there are many online resources for downloading free books-on-tape like Librivox.
Here are a few resources for MIND:
- The Berliner Philharmoniker’s Digital Concert Hall
- 12 World-Class Museums You Can Visit Online
- LibriVox | free public domain audiobooks
Stressful times challenge us to think smaller and bigger all at the same time. You might find yourself wondering what you can and can’t control in the universe. As long as humans have wandered the earth, these questions—big and small—have been put forth. Take this time to consider whether you want to connect more with your religious or social communities. Maybe this is a time that you want to do a little bit of self-help reading or explore meditation. There are apps that are well developed to help you turn inward like Headspace and Calm. Explore Oprah’s Super Soul Conversations to find new inspiration for your soul and spirit. If nothing else, take 60 seconds a few times per day and just sit quietly, back straight, eyes closed, and breath in deeply, exhale completely, and repeat.
Here are a few resources for SPIRIT: