I hope that this update finds everyone doing well and that you had a chance to enjoy the beautiful fall weather this past Saturday. We enjoyed time together amidst sports and kids' activities, getting a chance to enjoy 'Celebrate Holliston' day. After watching some football, we had a nice Sunday family dinner before the busyness of the week kicked in.
Driving home Friday evening I promised myself that I would take some time to 'unplug' and relax. As you know this is an uphill battle for me but one that I know is critical. I love my job and thoroughly enjoy the work, but I do recognize that the 'breaks' often feed the energy that is needed to be present with a clear head. This 'clear head' helps me to find clarity and threads of importance for our work. Rather than focusing on the details of the day to day taking a step back and looking from the 'bird's eye view' is healthy is sometimes just what is needed. With this in mind I am sharing a few posts this week that helped me to move towards clarity in my thinking. I believe they are in line with our mission and hope you find them of interest...
Starting Over Again - Some New Teacher Tips From a Not So Veteran Teacher
by Pernille Ripp (@pernilleripp)
In this post Ripp outlines her advice for new teachers, and I believe the points also hold true for the most experienced educators. She clearly demonstrates a mindset of positivity, and I particularly like a few key tips -- 'reach out, be nice, dream big, bring you with you'. In essence, our own authenticity, an openness to new ideas, and a sense of excitement/wonderment are factors that we should allow to influence our work.
"The dreams I have for my new students are starting to fire me up, the passion I have for teaching is pushing me forward. A new adventure awaits and I cannot wait to go on it."
Why We Don't Truly Embrace Failure
post by George Couros (@gcouros)
Couros's blog entry echoes the role that failure and mistakes play in the process of learning.
"The part of this process that is imperative is resiliency and grit. Resiliency, in this case, being the ability to come back after a defeat or unsuccessful attempt, and grit meaning a “resolve or strength of character.” These are characteristics that are important in the innovative process as we need to continuously develop new and better ways to serve our students.""Success is messy, as is learning."
Read Slowly to Benefit Your Brain and Cut Stress
by Jeanne Whalen in The Wall Street Journal
With our full days, both for students and adults, we often do not take the time just to sit down and read. Whalen's article supports the SSR program we have in place and is a good reminder of the benefits that come from 'slow reading'.
"Slow reading means a return to a continuous, linear pattern, in a quiet environment free of distractions. Advocates recommend setting aside at least 30 to 45 minutes in a comfortable chair far from cellphones and computers. Some suggest scheduling time like an exercise session."
At the end of the day, although written for an adult audience, these posts highlight characteristics, habits, and traits that we want for our students - asking questions, reaching out, showing vulnerability, learning from mistakes, and 'balance'. Learning is a messy process for all and I hope I can work to model these habits, for both our students and my own children, this week and in the weeks ahead. I am looking forward to a great week.
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