What All Teachers Should Be Doing During the Holidays

Holiday ideas for teachers

Written by Cassie (Teach Starter)

What do all teachers need to do on the holidays?
I’ll give you a hint.
It starts with “r” and ends with “elax”!

Make your classroom buzz! Subscribe to Teach Starter and access thousands of curriculum-aligned resources and digital learning tools. Get Started

Yes, yes, come August there will be planning, printing, laminating, decorating, filing and meal prepping to do, but right now it’s time to channel your inner Elsa and let it go!

However, while you may crumble into an exhausted, inanimate ball at the beginning of the term break, there’s little doubt that uncontrollable impetus to plan down to the micro-second will recover quickly. It’s at this point you’re going to want to find something to do!

If you are still more than a fortnight out from your return to school, put away those lists. Switch off the light on those new classroom decor dreams and carve out a chunk of time for YOU.

Teacher Holiday Ideas Criteria

Whatever activity you decide to do in this chunk of “me time” needs to meet the following criteria:

  1. It must be 100000% unrelated to school, teaching and the field of mainstream education.
  2. It must invoke feelings of joy and/or happiness and/or relaxation and/or bliss.
  3. It is something that you’ve never done before.
  4. It can be executed with minimal detailed planning.

Wait! Don’t stop reading! We’ve got this for you…

We know you’re tired.

Your brain has melted, dribbled out of your ears and been washed down the shower drain (we’re glad you’ve had a shower). The last thing you need is a somewhat cheeky blog post instructing you to figure out a holiday activity that is relaxing AND meets a set of clearly articulated, carefully crafted, exquisitely defined criteria.

Never fear, the ideas are here! Hyperlinks and all.

5 Perfect Teacher Holiday Break Ideas

(1) Read a mindless book.

Relaxing teacher holiday ideas - read a mindless book

Pick your genre. Pop culture. Romance. Your favorite thoroughly annotated non-fiction text about the evolution of the common housefly. Anything! As long as it is not the kind of book that makes you create a mental list of things you could or should be doing in your regular teacher life to be “better”. Holidays certainly aren’t the time for that!

You are a teacher. You are already AMAZING! Give your tired brain a bubble bath with a mindless read.

(2) Recharge your soul.

Your mind has been working hard this year, but your soul has been working harder. The rollercoaster of emotions involved in caring for small humans is an intense one!

Right here we are going to encourage you to do something that might be totally new to you. It’s the most beautiful, completely effortless act of self-care.



(3) Remember life outside four walls.

Teachers thrive on routine. Which is great during the school year because we’re sure to be in the right room, at the right time, most of the time… But there’s a word in that previous sentence that you need to break free of.


Get outside of four walls! Don’t replace your classroom, the school library and staffroom with your own lounge room these holidays. Give yourself the gift of experiencing something more!

If you get stuck for ideas when someone tells you “get outside and do something” Red Balloon is the perfect place to start! Sure, Red Balloon feels a little like a “gift” website – that you’d usually treat someone else to an experience they’d never organize for themselves. Therein lies the challenge for you. Choose something YOU would never organize for YOURSELF!!!

Check out Red Balloon’s Deals page for some awesome, discounted experiences ranging from the adrenalin rush of white water rafting on the Yarra River, to a relaxing hour spent in a float tank (or eating a whooooole lot of chocolate everythings at a fancy high tea!).

Or, even better, take a look at Red Balloon’s Christmas Deals for Two and split the cost with another teacher friend who really needs to get out!

(4) Take a [FREE] hike!

If you’d rather save up those dollars to spend on classroom display bits and pieces for your classroom next year, then this one is for you. It will get out of your house and out of your head. It will remind you how beautiful the world around us is. It will have you discovering parts of your local area that you maybe never even knew were there…

Take a hike!

Trail Hiking Australia is an AMAZING website created by hiking enthusiast Darren Edwards. The search function on the homepage allows you to find all kinds of walks and hikes in an area close to you.

Are you a seasoned, hiking adventurer? Set the filters to find a new multi-day hike!

Are you a seasoned, walk-from-one-end-of-Westfield-to-the-other-and-back-again adventurer? Set the filters to find a new short walk!

(5) Discover something new.

For the fifth, and final suggestion of this list of things that all teachers need to do on the school holidays, we are going provide you with a simple step-by-step process to follow.

Kind of like a lesson plan, but better, because it’s not a lesson plan.

Use Google Maps to find a new and unexpected holiday destination

Image Credit: This Is Me / shutterstock.com

Step 1: Go to Google Maps on a desktop or laptop computer.

Step 2: Zoom out from your current location.

Step 3: Zoom out again.

Step 4: Zoom out again.

Step 5: Zoom out a few more times until the map shows you places you’ve never been before.

Step 6: Decide on which vibe you’ve experienced less in your lifetime – city or country?

Step 7: Click on the “explore” menu/tab thingy in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen. This will reveal a plethora of images that people have shared from various locations on the map.

Step 8: Choose a place (city or country – whichever is less your ‘norm’).

Step 9: Pop the place into your favorite kind of accommodation portal (are you ready for another AirBnB experience? Or maybe you’re more a booking.com kind of explorer!)

Step 10: Book yourself accommodation for a night or two, in this place that you’ve never been before, and GO!

a woman relaxing on a beach in front of a vintage campervan

You too can relax in front of a vintage campervan on a beach, beside your (wifi?) vintage television and a loose bouquet of wildflowers if it brings joy to your soul!

Do it. You deserve it.

Seriously, just do it. Choose one (or more) of the inspirations on this list and go.

Of course, there will always be other things you “should” spend your time and money on. But honestly, you have worked SO hard this year. You give so much, physically, mentally, emotionally to help your little humans learn how they can be the best version of themselves in this crazy, complex and busy world.

Now it’s time you give a little back to you.

And, after you do, come back and tell us all about it in the comments below!

Make your classroom buzz! Subscribe to Teach Starter and access thousands of curriculum-aligned resources and digital learning tools. Get Started

Comments & feedback

Log in or sign up to join the conversation.

Popular blogs right now!

Our Vision

We believe in a world where every child is inspired to build a purposeful and happy life through learning.

Jill Snape & Scott Tonges (founders)
Jill Scott

About Teach Starter