Taking CARE of Business

Never believe that a few caring people can’t change the world. For, indeed, that’s all who ever have. ~Margaret Mead

It’s about this time of year that we start feeling pressure from all the expectations put on you in your classroom and beyond.  The pressure is legitimate.  When you CARE about the work you do in order to be the best you can be, you don’t take this pressure lightly.  It’s the nature of educators; we want to make a difference.  We want to help change our world because we care about those around us.  Everyone expects us to change the world.  We often know we can. And so we try…day after day. The pressure is legit.

The best analogy for this somewhat overwhelming time of year is best understood by comparing it to the feeling of eating at an appetizing dinner when you are super hungry and everything looks yummy. First of all, there’s the main course of the curriculum served up through the data teams process.  Then we load you up with side dishes where we expect you to take at least one serving of each.  Start with one large helping of transform and differentiate your instruction with digital tools and students’ digital exhibition artifacts on top.  Another dish, although not overwhelming, you must serve yourself is a good helping of our literacy plan implementation.  And you can’t skip the healthy, needed sides of grading and PowerTeacher, Schoolwires, your departmental best practices, text complexity PD implementation, upcoming Acuity training, and the upcoming new and improved taste of CAMP.  Yes, you have a LOT on your dinner plate.  Add to that the condiments for the meal to enhance the taste of your plateful of pressure.  Include a shake or two of the schedule with bell changes and a dollop of discipline, to name the favorites. And for those of you who enjoy and can’t get enough dessert, we have all those extra-duties –with sprinkles on top — whether paid or otherwise.  Yes, we realize you are full, and you are feeling it.  It takes strong dedication on your part to learn the processes thoroughly and to implement it with fidelity.  We want you to know we know, and we are here to help you digest it all.  The key for success is to take one bite at a time.  Strong and steady.  Manage your intake, and don’t overdo it.  Take a breath, laugh a lot (it helps make room for more), and share your dishes.  It’s amazing how much better a meal tastes when you sup with friends.

Week 4 in Review

Nice work on going over the student handbook and in your class meetings.  Hats off to all of you who took the time to talk through the rules with the students, answer their questions, and get clarification when you were not certain. Also great job on the class meetings.  I think our CAMP time was a highlight of the week.  I also appreciate everyone’s participation and attendance at our first faculty meeting of the year.  It was a heavy thirty minutes of work; there’s no doubt.  I loved the feedback that we should take that time to share celebrations as well.  Great idea! Consider that a new part of our meeting.  With that added, don’t forget to send me celebrations!  I have one to share next month that has to do with a staff member and socks. It will touch your heart! Bet you are wondering…what, what?  I also want to celebrate our teachers who continue to show they care by showing up at student activities after school and on weekends.  The students love it, and it’s very exciting to see such a supportive staff! Thank you so much for doing that for our kids!

Week 5: A Look Ahead

This week in our administrative walkthroughs, we will be looking for and providing feedback on instructional questioning.  We will look for what questions you are asking your students – do they require higher order thinking or are they mostly operational for giving directions?

Monday – sign handbook permission slips in CAMP and turn in right away.  If a student is absent, please fill in his/her name and note ABSENT at the top.

Wednesday – Job Embedded PD to start learning about the digital exhibition.  I will send out the white day locations to attend.  Benton Leadership Team (BLT) meets at 7:00 a.m.  in room 106.  Donuts anyone?

Thursday – we will have a modified schedule, which I will send out on Wednesday again.  We follow regular schedule except we will release early from 2R (10:15 bell) to go to CAMP.  Directions for viewing will come from Kelly.  Look for that and make sure you are ready to go.

Friday – Department PD for each dept in collab that day.  Each department should be prepared to share their Data Team work so far with admin, IC and any DLT team members who are able to attend. Pep Assembly schedule.

FYI on Monday – Complete department PD for each dept in collab that day.  Each department should be prepared to share their Data Team work so far with admin, IC and any DLT team members who are able to attend.

~Excellence is a journey not a destination.~

All images are available in Creative Commons from Flickr: “sphygmomanometer” by jasleen_kaur; “Dinner is served.” by jonesing1; “Red balloons” by Jakob E.


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