I like the "kinder, softer" version of you. I am also trying this approach, because like you, I think that our society desperately needs kindness. I'm not sure if you realize this, but I think that you checking on the new teachers and long-term subs, you are modeling what kindness looks like to your students. At the end of the day if you made just one child happy to be at your school, I think that you have done your job. Bravo!
thank you for your comments. I am trying to be a softer person, over all. In my own life it means enjoying where I am and when I am, in a Zen sort of way. At work, I working hard at making sure each student is a part of the class by making sure they all feel like they belong. It is funny how this single class, from our Admin. graduate program, has made me enjoy being in the classroom.
Kindness first, after that then teaching can happen.
Good Morning Mike,
Great job on your digital poster. I never realized that our yard duty (at our school its before and after school) can be part of our welcome pillar so thank you for pointing that out. Second, I like that how you recognize students once a week in your classroom. What is it based on and how do you recognize these students?
Lastly, I definitely agree that our "constant effort of trying" is what makes the difference. This statement is true in our lives as educators and what I remind my students all the time when they are struggling in anything difficult in their lives. I remind them that our struggles make our success that much sweeter.
Great job as always Mike and enjoy your well deserved time off from school and work.
my weekly awards go to students who just need a little push in the positive direction. Every student who is failing, every shy silent middle school girl, every boy who has a back-pack where everything goes into and nothing comes out, and those kids who just "be" a student.
I then give them a paper award, to hand on the fridge. I also give them some very cheap and silly prize, from the Dollar Tree. We make it a fun little moment for my students.
You are showing such great leadership initiative with your Welcome commitments - checking in with new teachers and long term subs not only makes them feel like part of the community but impacts the students tremendously. Nice job! Your last two Do No Harm commitments are great reminders for me - in fact I think you sent me the one about being positive not always solving your problems but annoying the negative Nancys surrounding us when I was struggling earlier this year. Your demeanor and positivity is super refreshing, along with your sense of humor and approachability these traits will make you such a great school leader. Kindness is a thread you weave throughout the pillars. There is no other way if you ask me. Happy to be on this journey with you!
well if it wasn't for you I would not be in this program. Thanks for getting me into gear. I hope the year goes better for you in the Spring. Wear your kindness and positive out-look like of badge of honor.
Aw, well I'm so glad you joined me! We've been working along parallel paths for so long but I feel like this is really the beginning of our journey teaming up to bring new leadership ideas to our district. We can make change! :)
I appreciate your efforts to check-in with both new teachers and subs. Teaching can be isolating. I like the softer, gentler, kinder focus. A few years back I was discussing an assignment with a student, and he said, "Mrs. B - could you extend me some grace?" I felt like I was sucker-punched in the gut. Ever since I too am trying a gentler approach!
I would like to be your colleague!
Thanks for the comments. Some simple kindness in the classroom can change a student's day. I wonder what it looks like at the admin. level ? We still have a 1/2 year of the program Norma, so in a sense...you are my colleague. Here is to the next two terms!
That's a wonderfully ambitious goal to e-mail your parents weekly. Should you succeed, I know the parents will LOVE it, and love you! An idea...what if you put a request in your signature line, asking parents to talk about whatever you e-mailed about with their kid? Then students will know you are in cahoots with their parents, and may be extra motivated to work hard! Good luck!
Thanks for commenting. Your idea in regards to my weekly e-mail, about asking parents to talk to their students about their work and assignments it brilliant. It is small ideas, comments, like these that makes collaboration so powerful. I often feel leadership sees collaboration as something needing documentation and a planned process, when the truth is collaborating is so simple.
I think the fact that you are checking in with new teachers and long term subs is a huge welcome and probably greatly appreciated. Also, you making sure you stay positive with students and co-workers speaks volumes to them and creates an overall positive working environment.
Being positive might not solve every problem, but it will annoy just enough people to make it worth the while.
I, too, have taken on the yard-duty commitment. Sometimes I regret it, but it really is a great way for us to stay connected to the kids, AND it shows that we are leaders who are literally willing to get our hands dirty. Yes, success is not always defined by grades, and I like that you are going to strive to identify successes in your students that aren't necessarily academic. The verbal irony bit hits home for me because I need to stop using sarcasm with my middle-schoolers. It's so hard! I agree that we do need to be the change we want to see in the world, and I share your distress at our culture's current predilection to "wear one's hatred on their sleeve." It's so depressing that being positive has become synonymous with being foolish. In my sphere of influence, I hear people say, "Yes, we can do this-or-that, but it won't do any good." Well of course it won't with THAT attitude!
Yard duty can be a nice way to get the tempo of the school. It also helps to have Pandora going and believe you are watching a music video. I sure try to make every student feel like they can achieve. Sometimes it is easy and other times finding success can be tricky. The point is to keep trying. Thanks for the comments.
The finale note is not the most important part of the concerto.