Daily 5 (plus 5) for Summer Rejuvenation


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Ah, blissful summer! It’s time for a break after a nonstop, nine-month, race-to-the-finish school year. Now that we’ve skidded to a stop, let’s be intentional in planning our retreat from the business of school. Daily 5 can help. If it’s good for the children (and we know it is), it’s good for us.

  1. Read to Self: We tell our students this is an everyday must-do, so we should do it, too. Whether for professional development or light reading, book recommendations are everywhere on the web. I’m interested in reading Tony Wagner’s Creating Innovators: The Making of Young People Who Will Change the World. For fun, I just finished reading Janet Evanovich’s Explosive Eighteen. Grandma Mazur gives me the giggles every time I read about her outrageous escapades.
  2. Work on Writing: I’ve always liked writing lists. It’s a good way to record many thoughts in a short period of time. I’ve purchased a new journal that I’m calling “The Top Tens.” My strategy is to write a range of lists from a myriad of life’s favorites, assorted bucket lists, and a multitude of gratitude lists. The only rule: only 10 items per list. Fast, furious, fun! What will you write this summer?
  3. Word Work: It’s time to build vocabulary through a new experience. I’ve discovered some high-end grocery stores that offer meal demonstrations by local chefs. I can’t wait to hear about futomaki, temaki, and unagii (types of sushi) and then taste the results. How will you expand your vocabulary this summer?
  4. Listen to Reading: Audiobooks are a great way to “read” while walking or working out. You may be able to download audiobooks from your public library directly to your phone (try the Libby app). A good narrator can really bring books alive. For example, listen to Jason Reynolds’s Track series and you’ll feel like you’re meeting every character in person.
  5. Read to Someone: Did you know that reading restaurant menus with a friend counts as partner reading? I’m picking a day each week to have lunch with a buddy. What a great opportunity to renew old acquaintances or make a new one and root out some delectable local cuisine.
  6. Stamina: Summer is the perfect opportunity to refocus on our physical health. Increasing our walk time and taking exercise classes are just two ways to help build our stamina and strength.
  7. Nonfiction: Enjoy the summer sunsets. Dig in the dirt. Marvel at the color of the flowers you see. Put your toes in some water. Take a hike and notice all the details. Nonfiction is a beautiful thing!
  8. Fiction: Create something fabulous and fun! I’m going to take a three-day mosaic class at the end of the month. Inspirational classes are available to teach you just about anything you might want to learn. Just take a look.
  9. Good Fit: Dust off something you used to enjoy. I grew up taking piano lessons but haven’t touched a piano in years. I’ve decided to give it another whirl. Did you know you can download sheet music from the Internet? Let the practicing begin.
  10. Book Shopping: Take an afternoon a week to scour the bookstores and libraries in town for new titles. Really, is there a better way to spend a few hours?

School may be out. But Daily 5 (plus 5) can help us relax and restore ourselves this summer. Enjoy.

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