Friday Focus

Learning For Life

Gratitude

1. The opportunity to share gratitude with Kim Ware's students on her Thanksgiving turkey. Each feather is created by her students with things they are thankful for.
2. #christianeducators, a community of believers on Twitter from all across the globe I connect with regularly on Thursday nights.
3. Students sharing their opinions honestly and respectfully (even when I don't agree with them).
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Project-Based Learning
I had a great conversation this week with a teacher who is planning a new project-based assessment. It will get students writing, requires collaboration, involves community, has risk of failure but opportunity for great success, provides audience beyond the classroom, and includes important topics of universal significance. WOW! That has me excited.

Co-teaching
During a classroom visit this week, I saw the co-teaching model at its best. When I entered the room, the teacher was leading students. After a very smooth transition, the student-teacher led instruction and did a great job, and then a field-base student led out in another activity. In each of these, all three instructors were fully present and their voices were heard in supportive and clarifying roles even when they weren't the lead teacher. It was awesome.

1:1 Update
Although we are full steam ahead with planning for a 'possible' 1:1 initiative, keep in mind nothing has been officially decided for next year. The school board will have that discussion very soon. Of course, I'm very hopeful we are moving forward sooner rather than later.

We had a productive discussion yesterday with students in Gina Lawson's student leadership class to let them see the Chromebooks and share what might happen next year. It was very interesting to hear their diverse perspectives. Some are excited about the possibility and some are not so excited. It's hard to disagree with the idea that the future will be owned by those who can leverage technology for learning and productivity. We want to give our students every chance to be ready for what happens after high school.

Liberator Time Attendance
Our new procedures seem to be working pretty well. If students haven't figured out where they belong and how to get there on time and ready, it's appropriate to provide consequences. If a student is late, send them for a tardy pass. If they have an unexcused absence, refer them as truant.

Veteran's Day 2014

The difference between projects and project-based learning

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Kind words are short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless. -Mother Teresa

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