Staying Cool and Being Cool

Tuesday Tip of the Week

As the end of the school gets closer, the temperature gets higher. And when the mercury in the thermometer creeps up, up, up, we all need to remember to stay cool and be cool. The former concerns your health, while the latter concerns behavioral mindfulness.

1. Staying Cool for Your Health

We are in mid-May, and the temperature is already starting to rise — going for 75 degrees today as I write this article. Hydration is immensely more important than parents and educators ever realized a generation ago. We used to just wait until we were thirsty and then get a drink of water. Now experts tell us that if we are thirsty, then we are already on the road to dehydration. Staying hydrated means drinking water throughout the day prior to experiencing thirst. According to the Mayo Clinic, most of us should remain optimally hydrated if we take in about 1.5 liters of water a day.

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Staying hydrated means drinking metered amounts of water throughout the day to avoid dehydration. I’m sure that rules vary from school-to-school, but most schools allows students to carry a water bottle, or as I like to call them, PHDs (personal hydration devices, a fancy term for simple water bottle, but hey — I’m a math teacher!) Do your best to be considerate of your teachers and classmates by re-filling your water bottle between classes. Asking to hydrate in the middle of a lesson is being a bit of a nuisance. Some schools, like Williamsport, even have refilling stations just for water bottles (see photo at left). These are likely to become ubiquitous, appearing in all schools.

2. Being Cool for Your Reputation

As the temperatures rise — to sometimes in excess of 95 degrees in some of our classrooms — please remember that it’s hot for all of us. Don’t be that incessant chatterbox who chronically whines about how hot it is and how miserable they are are. Doing so will not change the heat or humidity, and frankly people who belly-ache about things they cannot influence are typically viewed as being less than brilliant.

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And believe it or not, your teachers are probably just as antsy as you are about the school year ending and summer vacation starting. Contrary to widespread belief, we’re people, too. We don’t get plugged into a closet down in maintenance or central supply. So on those days when it’s hotter than a black tin roof in the middle of July, beating the heat sometimes just means learning how to be tolerant and making the best of a sticky situation. June 15 will be here soon enough! Don’t wish your life away.

So remember, stay cool by drinking water, and be cool by not complaining about the heat.

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