Each Time a Plane Departs


Allison Behne

May 24, 2024

Each time a plane departs, directions are given to the passengers on board. We’re told where the exits are, that the seats work as flotation devices, and that if oxygen masks appear, we are to take care of ourselves first. The flight attendant says, “If you are traveling with a child or someone who requires assistance, secure your mask first, and then assist the other person.”

We take care of ourselves first so that we can help others. That is a powerful concept and one that rings true in many situations. Think of how that rule applies to other professions. A firefighter puts on protective gear and oxygen before entering a burning building to rescue civilians. A doctor or nurse washes their hands before touching a patient in order to prevent further disease. A police officer wears protective clothing, carries necessary tools, and uses communication technology before approaching an unknown vehicle or scene. These protocols are in place for a reason—a person who is hurt or unable to function is not going to be able to help someone who requires assistance. Makes perfect sense.

Now let’s look at the teaching profession. Does anyone require assistance from us? Absolutely! Students, parents, and colleagues all need us! So naturally, if we apply the airplane mask rule, we must take care of ourselves first so that we can help others. But this isn’t common practice for teachers. We often burn both ends of the candle to make sure our students have everything they need and are getting the most from us. We come in early, work through recess, take a 10-minute lunch, forgo bathroom breaks, and stay after school when necessary. We celebrate the positives, shoulder the negatives, and don’t give up—because we believe so strongly in those around us.

That is why it is so important for teachers to join the list of professionals who put the oxygen mask on first. If we do that, we will be better equipped to help our students, and the rewards will be great.

The team at Teach Daily would like to encourage you to take care of yourself this summer, and we want to  give you some fun ideas to do it! Download our Summer Self Care Bingo card. Complete some self care activities, get a bingo and email us a picture of your bingo card. Everyone who participates will get a prize and it’s all for prioritizing you! For a bingo, we’ll send you access to our Relationships First Online Course and for a blackout, you’ll also get entered to win trainings, swag bags and a year of access to our websites. All prizes will help you make next school year the best one yet. But first, self care!


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