CSHS Weekly Bulletin
March 21-26, 2016
Failing to Learn
During Spring Break, my son officially became 2 and a half years old and my daughter turned 7 months. We were able to retreat down to Crystal Beach with my family for a few days last week, spending lots of quality time with my parents, siblings, and nephews. I tried to revel in the moment, taking in what is very likely the last family trip we will take before my oldest nephew goes off to college and watching my small children grow and change day by day--knowing that in no time it will be they who are in high school readying themselves for life on their own.
But for right now, I have an infant and a toddler who are learning leaps and bounds each and every day, and I am trying to memorize their little faces and movements, so when they move on to the next stage I will still hold who they are right now in my heart as well. Rather than holding on to the title of "World's Best Army Crawler" forever, Willa is working really hard to officially crawl, hiney in the air, poised to get to all of her big brother's toys and to cause happy mayhem. She is making great progress and has become threatening enough to Walt that he has taken to keeping his important toys up high on the ottoman out of her expanding reach. Up to this point, my son has spoken what we dubbed "Waltanese," but in the last few days, he is pronouncing words more clearly and expanding his vocabulary, emphatically telling us about how he sees the world around him.
On the road to learning to crawl, Willa has fallen quite literally flat on her face a hundred times. While figuring out how to talk, Walt has become incredibly frustrated when his idea was not understood by others. However, the pain and the frustration have not stopped either of them from continuing to try. Watching them develop and learn has made me wonder when the tipping point happens when we no longer get back up and try again or when we succumb to frustration and give up on learning or trying something new.
Amidst the thousands of things I have learned from becoming a mom, the one that is resonating with me today is that to learn something and do it well...we all have to fail and then have the courage to try again. What a paradox! We must fail in order to learn. Thankfully, no one is following Walt around with a rubric and giving him a "C" for only being able to say 10 nouns or scoring Willa with a "B-" for her form when crawling, but there are many implications here for what we do every day teaching teenagers. Some students may need more practice to get a skill. Others may need to overcome the mental barriers that were built up long before they arrive in our classrooms. The Growth Mindset is a popular educational catchphrase these days, but this premise is so important. If you'd like a refresher on this concept, please see this link to last August's staff development. As educators, we must reflect on these questions: How are we creating classroom environments that are both rigorous for our students, but that also allow them to learn from and build on failure? How are we cultivating risk-takers and innovators who meet challenges head on?
When Alan November visited CSISD, he shared the video, "Audri Rube Goldberg's Monster Trap." Please take a moment to watch it below and to consider how it relates to the Growth Mindset and the questions above.
Have a fabulous 4 day week!
Mandatory EOC Test Training
Mandatory Test Administrator Training is scheduled for this WEDNESDAY , March 23rd, at 7:30 am and 4:05 pm. The training will take approximately 35-40 minutes so please plan your attendance accordingly.
Thank you in advance for your time and commitment to making this testing season successful!
For those of you who WILL NOT be able to make it to the Test Administrator Training on March 23rd, the make-up training is scheduled for March 22nd at 7:30am. There WILL NOT be a make-up training session after Wednesday, March 23rd so please be sure to attend one of the 3 opportunities you have available to you. This training is MANDATORY for all instructional staff.
On another note, training will begin on time. If the door is closed when you arrive, you'll need to attend one of the other sessions.
Thank you for understanding and for your continued support!
Want to be an Instructional Coach?
CSHS is adding a 4th Instructional Coach. This is a great time to join the team to be at the forefront of some amazing changes happening to New Teacher University and the follow-up days. For more information, see the job description or ask one of our current ICs (Laffin, Stutts, C. Wellmann). Two or more years at CSHS and instructional leadership experience is preferred.
The application is due to Parkerson by 4 PM on Friday, March 25th (electronically or in my box).
Spring Has Sprung!
As Spring Break approaches, students are feeling spry!
- Be diligent this week (and always) about hall duty, tardies, and IDs. Your visibility makes a difference in student behavior and maintaining our high expectations.
- Please be aware that due to high volumes of referrals and incidents recently, the admin team is working diligently through each issue. We are more behind than we are all accustomed; therefore, the actions may be lagging behind the date it was issued. Having said that, we will also be working diligently to get back into the classrooms for scheduled walk-throughs.
Spring Coaching Exchange
Here is the link to the form to submit after your observation and post-conference.
I hope you learn something and make a connection during this process!
Student Registration Calendar
3/29 Cougar Baseball vs. Consol
3/29 English I EOC
3/29 Lady Cougar Softball vs. Caney Creek
3/31 English II EOC
3/30-4/3 SkillsUSA State Contest
4/5 Lady Cougar Softball vs. Rudder
4/5 Cougar Baseball vs. Caney Creek
4/12 Lady Cougar Softball vs. Huntsville
4/12 Cougar Baseball vs. Rudder
4/15 Lady Cougar Softball @ Consol
4/19 Lady Cougar Softball vs. Bryan
4/19 Cougar Baseball vs. Huntsville
4/22 Cougar Baseball @ Consol
4/26 Cougar Baseball @ Livingston