December 11, 2015
“No matter how busy you may think you are, you must find time for reading or surrender yourself to self-chosen ignorance.” --Confucius
When is the last time you read a book? Honestly? Can you name the last three books you read? I always love it when I hear someone state: “I have not read a book since high school or college,” as if being an adult means that every choice we make is a good one. Did we somehow obtain the idea that once a college degree is completed, we are never to read again? Do we think that the rest of the world will simply stop learning and we can remain current in our field without trying? Of course not, because we are professionals, and one thing we know about all professionals is they must continue to learn.
Research tells us that all schools where some students are not successful contain many students reading below grade level. How are we to create a culture of reading in our schools if we do not lead the way by reading? How are we to create a culture of reading in our schools if we personally never read? So, what would happen if we read ten pages a day (just during the school week)? We would read fifty pages a week and a 250 page book a month. How would we grow as human beings if we read 12 books a year? Are we ready to take the fifty page a week challenge? Are we ready to display outside our doors what we are reading? Are we ready to promote reading in the hallways? What would happen if our students read ten pages a day, fifty a week, 250 a month? How many pages could we read this spring within the confines of our buildings? How many pages could we read as leaders? Are we ready to make a commitment? Are you ready to make a commitment? I will match the highest bidder.
“If you never did you should, these things are fun, and fun is good.”—Dr. Seuss
Reading Reduces Stress
According to “How Reading Reduces Stress and Makes You Smarter at the Same Time” by Emma Siemasko, University of Sussex researchers found that reading reduces stress more than listening to music or walking. "It really doesn't matter what book you read, by losing yourself in a thoroughly engrossing book you can escape from the worries and stresses of the everyday world and spend a while exploring the domain of the author's imagination.” http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/239694
We Have More Knowledge than Ever Before!
We are all aware concerning how children mature faster than they used to because of diet and other factors. And, while this may not be a very good analogy, the same thing happens with information via technology. Buckminster Fuller created what is known as the “Knowledge Doubling Curve”; until 1900, it took approximately a century for knowledge to double. However, by the end of WWII, less than fifty years later, knowledge was doubling every 25 years. On average today, human knowledge is doubling every 13 months. IBM purports that eventually knowledge will double every 12 hours.
From Knowledge Doubling Every 12 Months, Soon to be Every 12 Hours By: David Russell Schilling
We all know that the best way for students to increase their reading level is to read, right? But, we also want students to read in order to be literate and to help create a society that can read, write, and make informed decisions. After all, isn’t that what Thomas Jefferson, Horace Mann and others believed—that in order to have a democratic society, the masses must be educated? But, what about enjoyment? Don’t we want our students to enjoy reading, to develop a love of reading and to continue to read throughout their lives? So, how do we motivate students to read? Martin Williams, proposes many suggestions in “How to Encourage Students to Read for Pleasure:
Teachers Share Their Top Tips.” First of all,
reading competitions often provide just the
right incentive for kids to read. One particular contest mentioned by Martin is the ’16 before You’re 16 Challenge’ where sixteen high interest classics are chosen and students are challenged to read as many as they can before they turn 16. Another suggestion is the ‘100 Word Challenge’ where students write online posts of 100 words about their reading or book. Still another suggestion is showing students that teachers read too by having all teachers share reading experiences with students. Reading walls are also popular ways to turn students on to reading. Teachers and students share the name of the book they are reading and include a sentence about it.
“If one reads enough books one has a fighting chance. Or better, one’s chances of survival increase with each book one reads.”—Sherman Alexie
“I cannot remember the books I’ve read any more than the meals I have eaten, even so, they have made me.”—Ralph Waldo Emerson
From the desk of Special Services . . .
We have not trained on this since I first came, but if an ARD recesses or ends in disagreement, please contact the director for support and/or input.
December 15--Instructional Rounds @ Collins 8:30 am
December 16--Early Release
December 17--Leadership Academy @ 9:00 am @ admin
December 16 EARLY RELEASE
SECONDARY SOCIAL STUDIES: GRADES 6-12 @ LWHS Library 1:30 pm
Kathy Uhlich REGION XI
TEKS--secondary social studies teachers
WORK ON FROG TIME/ADVISORY
CTE-- 3:00 PM MEETING WITH CARA
ELEMENTARY LEADERSHIP LITERACY TEAM: 1:00 – 2:30 @ ADMIN with Cara and Gwen
ALL CAMPUSES (EXCEPT HIGH SCHOOL): SUICIDE TRAINING PROVIDED BY COUNSELOR(S)
PLEASE DISCUSS THE START TIME WITH YOUR COUNSELOR; THIS IS A 2 HOUR REQUIRED TRAINING.
After the Break
January 4 PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT/WORKDAY
January 8th--AP/Coach PLC @ 9:00 am