Week of January 4, 2016
Dear Teachers, It's Time to Reset ~ by Lauren Quinn
I wanted to remind you of a few very important things. Some things you likely already know, but may have forgotten.
* You have incredible power. Power to connect, to nurture, to ignite. You are one person capable of immense, noble, life-changing things. Ignore the dooms day news surrounding your career. Yes, Finland seems like a good place to live- or Canada even. Yes, the grass may be greener in another school, with another _____ (fill in the blank). Or not. Education is a messy business. Embrace it. When you start to feel despair creeping in, when you start looking at the scope of what you do on a grand scale, stop. Bring it back to the small space where teaching is about one teacher and one student and the human connection made here. Breathe. Love. Connect, one student at a time. No matter where education is “going”, or what a new initiative brings, don’t throw away the gift of now- the place you are right this very minute and what you CAN DO right now. You can be hopeful. You can be compassionate. You can be present.
* Take care of yourself. Your students need you to do this. Put on your oxygen mask first so your teaching can be a gift of yourself to your students. They need your mind, body, and soul to be nurtured. You can’t give to them what you don’t have. Go to that one hour yoga class instead of grading papers. Go for that walk or that run. Stretch. Craft. Your impact in the classroom will be felt when you are giving to yourself outside of school hours. The papers can wait. You are more important. Give yourself permission to make self-care a top priority. Give yourself permission to slow down. Don’t wait for someone else to do this. You have virtuous and honorable work to do. Work that requires you take care of your whole beautiful self.
* Ask for help. When you feel like you are struggling to close the “knowing/doing” gap, get support. Share your struggle. We need more honesty and vulnerability in teaching. We need you to be mission-driven, to take what you know and DO it, in the classroom, every day. All of those “best practices” and research based interventions you learn about on professional development days- yes, they can be overwhelming. Find a little bit of something and apply it in your classroom. Take the leap. Choose risk over complacency. It will be messy. You are not guaranteed success. We need you to acknowledge how hard this is, and show others how to lean into the hard, the uncomfortable. Your school community desperately needs your integrity, your willingness to show your commitment to your students, to best practices, to cultivating a love of learning- even if it means making mistakes, or even falling flat on your face. But don’t try to go it alone. No matter your school culture, there is at least one person you can reach out to. Reach out, ask questions, co-teach, share, plan together, reflect. Let yourself be seen. My advice here is the same for your colleagues: Breathe. Love. Connect, one teacher at a time. Laugh often. Remember your work is serious and it’s not. Take delight in your students, in each other.
* Most importantly, choose hope. There are amazing things happening in classrooms all over the country, things that don’t often make the news. Be a part of this movement, a part of the solution rather than the problem. Ignore the curmudgeons- maybe they just need to see hope in action. Maybe not. Regardless, do your thing. Be this person in your school communities. Focus on what you can do, right now and connect with others who are doing the same. We need these hopeful little cohorts all over the place. We need them to grow and spread like wildfire. Can you see it? You have the power to start this fire.
Dear teachers, take good care of yourself over the holidays. Use it as a reset. Rest and refill your tank and start thinking about a sustainable way to do this into the new year. We have important work to do. The most important work- and we can do it, together.
Your Fellow Teacher
Click the link below for a special rate for the new Camp Gladiator starting at RES on January 4. Classes are M, T, Th at 5:15 and T, Th at 6:30
ROCK Merchandise - new styles available!
How can I purchase ROCK merchandise?
1. All parents/students MUST login using your student’s ID number and student’s last name. If you are a staff member or community member, please create a GUEST account if you do not already have one, or login using the credentials you previously created.
2. Parents/students will click on the student’s name under ‘Who are you shopping for?’ Staff members and community members skip to step 3.
3. Under ‘Shop’, click on ‘Items At Any KISD Facility’, next to ‘School Type, click on ‘DISTRICT OFFICE’, next to ‘School’, click on ‘District Office’, then next to ‘Categories’, click on ‘ROCK Merchandise’.
4. Click on ‘Buy’ next to the item(s) you want to purchase, then click on ‘Checkout’ and follow the blue prompts to complete checkout and pay by credit/debit card. A printable receipt will automatically pop-up on the screen once your transaction is complete.
Keller ISD Film Festival
The festival is an opportunity for students to develop their visual literacy and expand their educational experience in Keller ISD by fostering the creativity, artistic, communication and technical skills required for producing a movie. Students have seven entry categories to choose from including: Story, Comedy, Music Video, Documentary, PSA Plus, and Animation.
Students have the chance to be honored at an Awards Ceremony on April 5, 2016, at the Alliance Cinemark XD Movie Theater. Students can win trophies, certificates, prizes, and more!
For more information on the Film Fest, including details on how to submit your entries, visit www.KellerISD.net/Film!
Keller ISD Leadership Development Academy
If you are interested in participating in this program, see Becky. Application deadline is January 29.
Equivalency Time due March 1 - Make sure you have 6 EQ hours in Eduphoria
Next week at RES....
Staff Professional Development, 8:00 AM - cafeteria - dress comfortably
* Bring Classroom Discussions in Math book
* Have access to upcoming lesson plans
Becky off campus PM
Becky off campus AM
Thursday * NO Faculty Meeting
No Team Meetings with admin - Heather on campus for support
Becky off campus PM
PBIS Team meeting; 3:15; large conference room
Jacque off campus all day