Category Archives: Personal Best
I haven’t declared my New Year’s resolution this year because, for me, this practice has become redolent with the stink of failure. I look back on the resolutions I’ve made these past five years and I haven’t successfully achieved any of them. Continue reading
The holidays are approaching. Working with middle school kids on the days preceding a vacation can be particularly challenging. How do you make it work? This post is a collaboration between a group of middle school leaders from across the … Continue reading
This post is a collaboration between a group of middle school leaders from across the country. Periodically, these passionate and dedicated middle school principals share their thoughts on issues of relevance for those “in the middle”. Working at the middle-level … Continue reading
Whenever you ask young adolescents about the adults in their lives, their teachers, administrators, their bus driver, the lunch ladies, they always focus on some quirky detail that is the part that becomes the whole. Continue reading
Amazing educators, when you ask them, “What do you teach?”, they reply, “I teach kids!” Great teachers love kids. They love the students in front of them and they understand the sacred nature of their professional responsibility to nurture the academic and personal development of kids. Great teachers know that relationships are the most important thing; not homework, not tests, not awesome lesson plans, but relationships. Continue reading
Are there areas of your practice as a leader or teacher that you haven’t figured out? How are you modelling your learning? How can we be transparent about the process as we learn new things and try to find answers to life’s essential questions? Continue reading
rincipals and teachers can create singular moments for kids everyday. Like the Brooklyn Nets, these are our schools, classrooms, hallways, gyms, and cafeterias. We are in charge of these settings. We can do extraordinary things to create lifelong fans of learning and of our schools. Continue reading
If you’re going to have a single job for a long time, the two jobs you would do well to consider are classroom teacher and middle school school principal. Both of these are dynamic roles that are constantly challenging, you can never be bored. The jobs of the principal or the teacher are wildly unpredictable. It’s important to have a plan but don’t expect that you’ll be able to follow it. Because of the chaotic dynamism of these roles, there’s a tendency for some people to cling to consistency. Continue reading
We cannot control the weather, but there are so many things that educators do control.
It’s about intentionality. Everything we do as educators should be done with intention, not because that’s the way were were taught, not because it’s what “feels” right, or what’s easy for us; we must always act in ways that create safe conditions for learning to take place and to build the resilience of our kids.
Remembering Dates I share a birthday with Ludwig van Beethoven, December 16. That’s probably why, when I want to play classical music on my Amazon Echo I normally ask, “Alexa, play my Pandora Beethoven station.” Of course Beethoven is awesome, … Continue reading