The first day of classes for January 2011 has ended, and I find myself back into the educational swing of things after a two week break during which time I read books and blogs for pleasure, scarcely thought about school, and instead focused on family. My students assumed I had spent my holiday time on Google given how much we use in class for collaboration and research (and my excitement after the GWEOCDSB event in November), but I surprised them by telling them honestly that I had not really been online at all. Sure I had planned to update my webpage, read lots of great bloggers, and even blog for myself, but this just did not happen. Do I regret this? Of course not because I spent tons of time skating and playing hockey with my son and daughter, learning about games like the wizard chess-like Crusade and Conquer and Gobblet Gobblers with all the kids, and reading and laughing everyday with my wife and children. Two weeks of relaxation and personal reflection have been wonderful for me. I have come back to school refreshed and ready for the end of the first semester.
So where does this leave me at the end of the day? I have a renewed respect for family-work balance. My family is what makes me who I am in front of my students; my students remind me daily why I love and respect my family. New Year’s resolutions are not really something I believe in, but I do think making some simple goals is important. In addition to maintaining and furthering the family-work balance, I have joined some Flickr photo groups (Twitter PLN 365/2011 and 52/2011 Group and #Project52) so that I actually use my camera and do something with the photos I take. Also, exercise and healthy living will be a focus for 2011 thanks to the Fit42 Challenge. Of course I would never have found these activities had it not been for the excellent people who make up my PLN on Twitter. A hearty thank you to all who have contributed to my continued learning this school year.
As I finish typing this first blog post of 2011, Johnny Cash’s rendition of “We’ll Meet Again” has just started playing on my iPod. While this song does suggest an ending, this year it stands for a beginning. The year ahead offers may new opportunities and experiences. I hope to meet some of you again on the journey ahead.
“We’ll meet again, don’t know where, don’t know when,
but I know we’ll meet again some sunny day!”