Back to the Extended School Year

Working in special education, like I do, and working in a residential treatment facility, like I do, means that I have clients available to me throughout the calendar year. When I was first hired, many years ago, the position was advertised as either a nine or twelve month position. My principal at the time did not give me a choice and signed me up for the full year position, covering our Extended School Year (ESY). I didn't argue. Way back then, we had three weeks between school and ESY. I would get REALLY bored with my own company, and I would head back to work with an enthusiastic attitude after going a bit stir crazy at home by myself. I had enough time during those breaks to go home to visit my family and then to work at home. Those days are gone.

Today, I go back to work for our extended school year. Lots of things have changed in the many years that I have been at this particular facility, but one thing remains consistent - our students do much better with the structure of school than without it. We will be going back into our routine today with the addition of swimming.

My own schedule will not change much. My group times are set, and they are the same as they were during the regular school year. We do not have school on Fridays, so I miss my plan/prep day, but that's okay. I have to have groups come into my room to use the reward store, so I get some planning time during the week. My routine will remain pretty much the same for this session as for the regular school year.

So, now that I am heading back to work, I am going to establish my "be there on time" routine again. I will be working with my interns for an extended day already so they can get their clinical hours into seven months rather than nine. My leaving time will be about an hour later than I've been leaving lately. I don't want to arrive at work too early since I now have to stay later as part of this internship program. So, I have my steps for the morning established, and it is time to work through the list.

Blogging - check. Here it is - my blog post for the morning.
Brushing Teeth - not yet.
Breakfast - I don't do this on a routine basis, but I need to. Hence the addition to the list.
Make a Lunch - again, I don't do this on a routine basis, but I need to as well.
Exercise - my bike is still in its box, so this isn't happening yet, but it will soon.
Chore - there is plenty to do in my home, so I will be making an effort to do something every morning - today's chore is to bag up the confidential shredding so I can take it to the UPS store this afternoon. I also have a box of pens to send to The Pen Guy

Once at work, I will get ready for the day. Our session strategies today include singing a "welcome back" song, introducing the new music therapy intern to clients and staff members, trying out a brand new therapeutic music experience (TME), "Human Coding," and playing some instruments. I haven't even removed my work bullet journal/session strategizer from my work back all week, so I'm not exactly sure what I wrote for today's sessions, but I'll find out. This is not a centers week, so all of my sessions will be the more traditional, sit in a semi-circle (kinda) and go type of session.

It is time to get going on the rest of my routine.

Welcome to the Extended School Year, everyone! Sixteen work days in this month. It can be done!!


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