Every year I visit FutureMe.org and write a letter to myself that will appear in my inbox in June of next year. This year, I sent it to myself and accidentally programmed it to be received in August, instead of June. Usually, when I receive the letter in June, I am coming into summer mode and starting to relax. It is a bit humorous to receive it now when my excitement and anxiety are beginning for the new school year. However, my motto is…”it’s all good.”
FutureMe.org is a free online tool that gives you the opportunity to send yourself a letter 30+ days into the future. You do not need to set up a login to send yourself a letter. You just need to confirm your email address.
FutureMe.org does have options of setting up an account where you save and access your letters. They suggest that you use an email address that has longevity, especially if you are sending it to yourself to receive at the end of the school year.
You have two options for your letter: Private and “Public, but anonymous”. Private means that only you will see it. “Public, but anonymous” means it will be included in public letters section. Your email address will never be shown or shared, but the body and the subject of the letter will. Therefore, do not mention names as they can delete those public letters. The benefit of the public letters section is the inspiration you can feel by others’ letters.
My Letter from August of 2018
In August of 2018, I asked myself how my year went. I also reminded myself of my goals from the beginning of the school year. They included:
- Did you support your students in their learning needs?
- Did you remind yourself daily that your students are someone’s child and how would you want your daughters to be treated by their teachers?
- Were you successful in trying one new way of teaching with each grade level?
- Do you feel that you supported your family emotionally and financially?
- Was starting your ISTE Certification approved?
- How was presenting at the conferences this year?
- Did you get further with your book? Is it finished?
- Did you remember how special it is to have your children attend the school that you work?
This letter reminded me of many important items that I sometimes take for granted or forget. It was a great letter to receive when preparing to start the new school year.
I hope that you consider writing your future self a letter to open on the last day of school or at the beginning of the next school year. I suggest writing the letter when you are in a good state of mind. That could be when you are alone and reading a good book, or when you are playing with your children, or when you have your classroom set up, or when you are playing your instrument, etc. What would you write your future self?
Amy M. Burns is an elementary music educator, clinician, author, and musician. She currently works at Far Hills Country Day School in Far Hills, NJ teaching PreK through Grade 3 general music, grade 5 instrumental music, and grades 4-8 instrumental band. She is the author of Technology Integration in the Elementary Music Classroom, Help! I am an Elementary Music Teacher with a SMART Board, and Help! I am an Elementary Music Teacher with One or more iPads! She is also an author for Online Learning Exchange™ Interactive Music powered by Silver Burdett. She has given numerous presentations on integrating technology into the elementary music classroom as well as being a keynote speaker for music technology conferences in Texas, Indiana, St. Maarten, and Australia. She is the recipient of the 2005 TI:ME Teacher of the Year Award, the 2016 NJ Master Music Teacher Award, the 2016 NJ Governor’s Leader in Arts Education Award, and the 2017 Non-Public School Teacher of the Year Award. You can find out more about Amy at her website: amymburns.com