Dear educators: you deserve a break. 

As we enter the week of Thanksgiving, please take care of yourselves and find time for rest and solace. You have been working so hard. Along with so many others, I’m grateful for you.

When I feel depleted of my human energy, I find relief by looking deeply at nature. Not only because nature is calming to my brain and my soul, but because being in nature reminds me that I am part of something so much larger and bigger and more forceful than myself.

So much of our social lives has changed and perhaps feels restricted. Like so many of you, I will be spending a Thanksgiving holiday like none other. For once, I will cook a meal and gather only with the humans under my very own roof. And while that is very different, the forces of nature outside of me carry on.

I hope that you can spend some time feeling the joys of the nature around us. Try just listening to the sounds outside – hear the birds and the sounds of the wind. Feel the air move over you. If you are able, listen to the never-ending sound of the push and pull of water from the ocean. And take a moment to gaze and the sun or the moon and the stars. They are there every day — rising and setting — even when we can’t see them.

you deserve a break

I’m so grateful for the forces of nature. Their stability makes me remember that I am so small and temporary on this earth. The sun and the moon, the tides and the wind – they rise and set and return every day. Without any of my effort or striving.

Educators — principals, teachers, bus drivers, staff, administrators, paraprofessionals — you are forces of nature. You deserve a break. Please enjoy some rest and find comfort in the nature around you.

With so much admiration,
Rachel & the staff of the UVM Tarrant Institute

Rachel Mark

Rachel Mark joins the Tarrant Institute as a Professional Development Coordinator in the southern part of Vermont. Prior to working with TIIE, Rachel was a middle school literacy and social studies teacher at Tarrant partner school Manchester Elementary-Middle. As a teacher, Rachel loved exploring new content and new methods with inquisitive young adolescents. She thinks middle schools are the most dynamic learning centers in the state. Rachel is passionate about supporting teachers and helping them overcome obstacles; it’s her mission to break down the barriers that teachers face in implementing change. She is interested in student reflection and portfolio based assessment, inquiry and project-based learning When she's not reading, researching and supporting teachers, Rachel loves to play. She balances her life shuttling three busy kids around by getting sweaty and zen - yoga, exercise, and being outdoors are how she recharges her metaphorical batteries.

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