ACE Newsletter

September 1, 2019

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Dear ACE Family,

It has been a great 1st two weeks of school! There has been inspiring relationship building and strong launches everywhere of routines, procedures, classroom respect agreements, class greetings, mindfulness, and restorative practices. Classrooms are creatively designed, organized, and facilitate wonderful learning spaces.

Teachers across the network are modeling tight lessons by introducing the objective and essential questions for the day followed by intentionally teaching academic vocabulary and introducing lessons with tight hooks and modeling through the think aloud. All of this wonderful learning is supported through print-rich environments and anchor charts that punch the learning for students. Students are soaking in the learning with smiles, interactive notebooks, and reflections.

Math routines are taking off with students grappling with understanding mathematical concepts with real world application. Literacy classes are filled with students doing what matters most, independently reading and applying literacy skills to build fluency and comprehension.

What an amazing start!

As we prepare the enter the 3rd week of this six week cycle, let's keep the momentum going! Your energetic and inspiring commitment to our mission and to your students is changing the way our scholars experience education. Seeing the joy on the students' faces these past two weeks made it clear that they feel valued. They feel seen. They feel heard. They feel connected and feel like they belong. This is what our mission is all about!

As you gear up to deepen the learning through independent reading conferences, preview challenges, science labs, and mentor texts in writing....remember to also deepen the connection. As Brene Brown says in Dare to Lead, "We must be guardians of a space that allows students to breathe and be curious and explore the world and be who they are without suffocation.--We should never underestimate the benefit to a child of having a place to long--even one--where they can take off their armor. It can and often does change the trajectory of their life."

Best wishes for a wonderful week of learning!

-ACE Core Team

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Leadership Focus: Model the Way

What does it mean to Model the Way?

During our ACE Summit, we learned about a leadership skill of Modeling the Way. Modeling the way means two things:

  1. Live into your values
  2. Set the Example

“Leadership is about articulating visions, embodying values, and creating the environment within which things can be accomplished.” -Richards & Engle

As we pursue the acceleration of campus excellence, we have to know our values and what guides us. We have to know what we stand for as we pursue equity for students. And most importantly, we have to know how we set this example everyday through our actions and words.

We left our ACE Summit with a charge to Set the example in four ways:

  1. Spend your time and Attention Wisely: How you spend your time communicates what you find important. How do you attend to the mission and vision? How do you focus on your department and personal goals?
  2. Watch Your Language: Our words have power and either build momentum for our mission or detract from the mission. What words, phrases, stories or analogies have you created to keep the mission alive? The words we choose to use are metaphors for concepts that define attitudes, behaviors, structures, and systems.
  3. Ask Purposeful Questions: Which questions we ask matter. Questions direction attention to the values that deserve attention. How do the questions we ask in meetings, PD, PLCs, help clarify and gain commitment to our shared values? What evidence do you ask for that asks how people are making decisions consistent with our values?
  4. Seek Feedback: Self-reflection and the willingness to seek feedback is critical to our leadership. We have to be sincere in our desire to improve and demonstrate we are open to knowing how others are receiving our leadership. To attain is critical.

We look forward to hearing about your experiences as you have aimed to Model the Way!

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Leadership Team Thursday: Enable Other to Act-Foster Collaboration

We are excited to launch our next leadership session focused around how we will enable others to act by fostering collaboration and a deep dive into side-by-side planning.

Who: ACE 2.0 & 3.0 Teacher Leaders, CICs, APs, and Principals

Time: 3:30-6:30 pm

Location: Edison Middle School

What to bring:

  • Laptop
  • Leadership binder
  • Dare to Lead book
  • The Leadership Challenge book

Don't forget to bring your homework:

  1. In The Leadership Challenge, read pages 195-218
  2. Complete Model the Way Reflections using What, So What, Now What reflection protocol(click here for guided notes packet with homework on page 8).
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ACE Celebrations...Catching Excellence in Action!

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Energized and ready for the new school year with inspiring arrivals!

Dismissal Routines with a little extra joy and relationship building!

Building Classroom Communities in Morning Meeting!

Moving with a Purpose! Transitions never looked so good!

Learning What Good Readers Do...Picking just right books!

Thinking Like Mathematicians...from concrete to pictorial to abstract!

Joyful lessons...learning with a smile!

Lunch Buddies-Relationship Building in Action!

Classroom agendas filled with bell to bell instruction! Can you spot the school-wide Mindful Moment on the schedule???

I spar, You spar, Everyone Exemplar!

Kicking off the school year with our Early Learning team by our side!

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