As I drove around my neighborhood this Halloween night I was once again reminded of all the stuff we have, and I wonder if we will ever find peace with all the chaos around us. While decorations are nice, do we need roof-high inflated pumpkins? And, as it is just a couple of days before Election Day, I felt like I was traveling through a sign forest, and does bigger really mean better - or just more annoying?
Think about the environments we create for ourselves, and our children. Are they calming, peaceful places? Does a drive through your neighborhood feel stressful? Think about your classroom. Is it a place to escape the chaos of the world? Do we discourage the materialism from creeping into our classrooms (Silly Bandz, I'm talking to you.)
There is definitely something to be said for some good books, some bits of nature to explore, paper (yes, paper!) and pencils, crayons, and scissors. Computers, we like you too, but not just because you're there - you need a good reason to be opened up.
Just recently, I had a conversation about all the choices there were in our classroom. I assured the class that they did not have to do everything in one day. They had the whole year and would definitely get a chance to explore whatever they didn't get to on that given day. One thing at a time...take it slowly.
ps - Don't even think about getting out the next holiday decorations yet...just enjoy a little bit of nothing for a while!