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Posts from the ‘Benefits’ Category

Gratitude Helps Reduce Stress

Learn how taking a few minutes for gratitude meditation can increase positive feelings. Giving yourself regular reminders of what you’re most grateful for can have a powerful impact on your body and mind.

Find out more by watching this week’s CEA Mindful Moment video.

 

Mindful Moment: A Cup Of Tea

This series of short videos from CEA Teacher Development Specialist Kate Field illustrates how mindfulness can enhance the overall well being of students and teachers.

CEA Mindfulness Moment: The Power of Positive Images

These uncertain times are causing anxiety and stress. Wind down with weekly CEA Mindful Moments videos brought to you by CEA Teacher Development Specialist Kate Field, who shares uplifting stories and activities that can enhance your well-being.

 

Mindfulness is a therapeutic technique for raising moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts and feelings. During these challenging times, teachers share that they are feeling frustrated, exhausted, stressed, overwhelmed, tired, anxious, and unsure about the future.

“Many teachers are trying to figure out distance learning and how to make it work for all learners,” says Field. “You may be juggling teaching and parenting responsibilities at the same time, and you may be grieving a life you miss and wondering if and when things will return to normal.”

While encouraging teachers to validate their feelings and concerns, she also notes that we are all “architects of our own thinking” and that it is possible to create new pathways of thought by choosing what types of thinking to prune and what to foster.

“Purposeful and repetitive actions to rewire your brain can take as little as ten minutes a day,” she says. Get started by watching the video above.

Educator Resources from the Connecticut Science Center

Teachers have rapidly had to learn a variety of new online platforms, tools, and strategies—and CEA’s member benefits partner, the Connecticut Science Center, is supporting your professional learning needs through a variety of online and social media platforms.

Educators’ Hub on Facebook
The Science Center has started a new Facebook group specifically with teachers in mind. The new Educators’ Hub Facebook group is the place to go to meet fellow educators while learning, collaborating, and just being social. Read more

What Happens if I Get Sick?

We hope you and your family are staying healthy—but it’s important to know what to do if you do become ill.

According to the CDC, if you have a fever or cough, you might have COVID-19. Keep track of your symptoms, contact your doctor, and if you have an emergency warning sign, including trouble breathing, get medical attention right away. Read more of the CDC guidelines.

Is my affiliate covered under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)?

  • If you have fewer than 500 employees, you are probably covered.
  • However, the law grants the Secretary of Labor authority to issue regulations exempting businesses with fewer than 50 employees when the imposition of these requirements would jeopardize the viability of those businesses. The Department of Labor is expected to issue regulations in April.
  • For employers with fewer than 25 employees, there are also some exceptions to the job restoration requirement under the FMLA expansion.

Read more

February Deals and Discounts from NEA Member Benefits

Flowers, perfume, jewelry, and more are featured discounts from NEA Member Benefits this February. Read below for more details!

NEA Click & Save “Buy-lights” for February 2020

Share and show the love this month with gifts to please your sweetie! NEA Click & Save, the online discount buying service for NEA members, highlights select retailers and merchants each month. Check out these featured “Buy-lights” for February!*

*Note: Up-to-date information on merchant discounts, shipping terms and WOW Points appears on the NEA Click & Save Web page at www.neamb.com/clickandsave and may change at any time. Don’t forget to use your WOWPoints—they’re just like cash (100 WOW Points = $1; plus, no blackout dates and no expiration). Read more

Save Big With CEA Member Discounts Over February Break

Whether you’re staying at home or traveling over the Presidents’ Day long weekend, you can save with CEA member benefits.

From discounts at Vermont and Massachusetts ski slopes to savings at area museums to deals on car rentals and airport parking, your CEA membership card goes a long way.

Below are links to just some of the deals available to you as a CEA member.

Make This the Year You Plan Your Dream Trip

Whether your dream trip is your upcoming honeymoon, your much-awaited retirement adventure or you just want to cross a destination off your bucket list, NEA Member Benefits wants to help you achieve that dream trip this year. Do you want to explore the streets of Tokyo, swim with dolphins in Honolulu, climb Mount Kilimanjaro or hit the streets of Barcelona, Spain? Here’s what you need to do to start planning your fantasy trip—TODAY!

What’s your dream trip?

Some people already have a very clear picture of that “once in a lifetime” dream trip. Maybe you’ve always wanted to hike through Costa Rica’s Monteverde Cloud Forest, or explore the museums in Rome, Florence and Venice.

For others, maybe those who haven’t traveled that much in the past, it could be more difficult to determine exactly where you want to go and what you want to see and do. Sit down with a piece of paper and spend five minutes writing down locations off the top of your head that you’ve always wanted to visit or that intrigue you. Read more

CEA Negotiations Conference Is February 1: Register Now

Learn new strategies to bring to the bargaining table to boost your salary and benefits at CEA’s Negotiations Conference on Saturday, February 1.

You will have the opportunity to network with colleagues from around the state and take part in sessions that will give you the tools and expertise you need for a better contract.

Sessions cover everything from working with your board of education to expanding your impact through social media and bargaining for the common good. See the complete agenda here. This event is free for CEA members, and lunch is included.

Register now.

Are You Missing Out on These Educator Tax Deductions?

Read these tips from NEA Member Benefits before you start working on your taxes this year. Make sure you claim your educator deductions so you can get back as much money as possible.

The tax reform of 2017 kept the $250 above-the-line deduction for classroom supplies, and it’s still available for the 2019 tax year (the year for which taxes are due on April 15, 2020). The $250 deduction is particularly advantageous because it is above the line on Schedule A, which means you don’t have to itemize to take it and it reduces your overall adjusted gross income (AGI).

This becomes even more important under the most recent tax reform, which virtually doubled the standard deduction, setting the threshold even higher for choosing to itemize. Legislation in 2015 indexed the amount to inflation—though it is unchanged at $250 for 2019—and allows professional development expenses to be included in the deduction. If both spouses filing jointly are educators, each can claim the deduction, for a total of $500. Read more