Sunday, May 21, 2017

Mirror mirror....

The end of the school year is a great time for student self-reflection, but also for your own adult self-reflection. With a profession as challenging as teaching, self-reflection offers educators an opportunity to think about what works and what doesn't in your teaching practice. Regular reflection (and certainly now at the end of the end of the year) serves as a great way to analyze and evaluate our practices so we can focus on what works and model a growth mindset for those we come in contact with every day.

That said, set 30min. aside for yourself... YEEESSSS, you CAN make 30min to better yourself this week... and reflect on these questions. Seriously, write down your responses! Send them my way if you want some accountability...would be happy to support!

  1. What has been your greatest success this year? Have you been successful in meeting your professional goals? What specific examples can you provide?  Note: If you're thinking, "I'm not even sure what my professional goals were," then to me! Let's get you focused before next school year starts!
  2. What has been your biggest challenge this year? How have you adapted your professional or personal practice to meet and overcome this challenge? Do you feel you were successful? Why?
  3. What has provided you with the greatest joy in your work this year? How have you found your work enjoyable?
  4. Where do you go from here? What is next for you as a professional challenge for next year? Look ahead and predict what type of goals you would like for yourself in the 2017-2018 school year. 

Peace, love, and do you see what I see!?


Sunday, May 7, 2017

"I just felt like running" - FG

Based on the number of marathons that take place at the beginning of May, I think it's safe to consider this the beginning of the summer competitive road racing season!!! In Cincinnati, we had the Flying Pig Marathon this weekend as well the Indianapolis half marathon just slightly farther north. Congrats to all who participated in any of the weekend events and know that I HIGHLY admire your persistence and commitment to the goal that kept you motivated throughout all of training season!

In a recent, monthly check-in with Derek Leininger, Director of Towles MS in Fort Wayne, IN, we were talking about a conversation the Towles staff was having about supporting a culture of engagement as the weather changes (along with ourselves and our students) at the end of the year. Being a former Cross Country and Track Coach, he spoke in metaphor (which I loved) about these last few weeks feeling a lot like running a mile on the track. Four laps around a track is one mile. When you're 3 laps into running a mile, your body tends to want you to stop. But, to maintain that final push, you actually have to INCREASE your pace in order to make it.   That's right... you have to go faster at the end just to keep up with your performance level in the beginning.

Most of you are just three weeks away from the end of the school year. Each week will naturally be more difficult than the previous week. This is the time to push. Take a deep breath, be intentional with your planning, and don't stray from your training. This is not the time to revert back to disconnected worksheets, video clips, or lecture every day only because it feels like all you can muster up right now just to stay sane. You've been sane since August... and you've been doing amazing things with students (even if at times, they challenge your ability to see that). You've been creating learning opportunities for your students that have purpose and meaning. You've been training in PBL/PrBL all year.... THIS IS YOUR LAST LAP!  Stay the course. Trust your training. Give a little more now to keep up with where you have been all year (you're going to have to... between your student's mental state and your teaching, it's the only thing you actually have control over)!!!

As your coach, I beg of you.... DIG IN! Make this the best school year finish you and your students have ever experienced. YOU. CAN. DO. THIS.

Peace, love, and Personal Records (PRs),