1) Plan lessons or create to do lists.
You have a large pocket of time when you're commuting, so why not make the most of it to plan lessons or create to do lists! If you don't drive on your commute, you can easily write things down in preparation for the day/days ahead. However, even if you do drive to work you can still do this with a voice recorder or a speech to text app on your phone to make notes of ideas that pop into your head!
P.S. Watch this space for a post on great teacher apps such as these soon... Make sure you subscribe to be notified of new posts!
2) Motivate yourself.
Listening to motivational talks are a great way to start the day on a positive note. You can download your favourite pod-casts onto your phone and listen to them while you travel. I personally do this on morning journeys so I have a positive message in mind to focus on throughout the day. Also, on the way home I'm usually too tired, and depending on my day, I usually prefer upbeat music to keep my spirits up/keep me awake! Experiment and find out what works best for you.
If you're engrossed in a book right now, you can of course read it on your journey if you use public transport. But hey, drivers can do that too with audio books! Download your book onto your phone and let it read it out to you: a great way of passing time without wasting it!
4) Relax / meditate.
Alternatively, there are those days where you just need to relax your mind: either you have a mad day ahead that you want to prepare for, or you are coming home from an exhausting day (isn't that every day being a teacher?!). I definitely have days where I don't want any noise, I just want peace and quiet with my own thoughts. You could also play relaxing music to Zen out before or after a busy day at work.
Finally, another great idea for making the most of your commute is to car pool! If there are any colleagues or family who live and work near you, you can join a car pool where you could offer a lift or take it in turns to drive. This is great for two reasons: it provides you with some company on your journey and dramatically saves money on fuel as well!
Finally, a quote to reflect on in the words of John Lennon:
"Time you enjoy wasting, was not wasted."