Missile Message

Weekly Updates Feb. 15 - 19, 2016

Martin's Musings

"What we learn to do , we learn by doing." - Aristotle


This past week I visited classrooms and listened to teachers in classrooms, on planning, in hallways. In each visit and conversation I heard teachers reflecting. I saw and heard celebrations, frustrations, risks being taken, and new strategies being tried. In all of this the most important thing I saw and heard were teachers and students alike learning.


I visited Mrs. Vogel's classroom where students were engaged with manipulatives to solve equations and the focus was amazing. She even sent me an email on Friday about her excitement around their work! Ms. Arnold's students were setting norms for book clubs using the standards they deconstructed. The were recording all the work in google docs and recording reflections on a discussion board in Schoology. Mr. Floyd and Mrs. Lohr were reflecting over data around argument writing that had not gone as well as they hoped but collaboratively recognized and discussed next steps. Ms. Overton and Ms. Keiner-Rummel have continued with their PBL while encountering successes and frustrations. This past week I was a part of a brainstorming conversation around some of the frustrations that arose this week with Ms. Overton, Ms. Keiner-Rummel, and Mr. Hale. By Friday, each shared successes classes had this week and were proud students work and the strides forward in the work they had seen by the end of the week.


I say all of that to say this. We are out front. You are taking risks with technology, PBL, self paced and new learning. You are having great conversations around student learning and work. You are anchoring all of this work in purposeful planning. Keep It Up!! You are having conversations around next steps in Standards Based Grading that lead to another paradigm shift. The scheduling committee is researching ideas to support our innovative work. When you are in the middle of new learning and change, the most important part is to keep on doing. Don't let the "hiccups" stop your forward momentum. Remember it is okay to "fail forward". That is how we learn and ultimately remove the barriers for our students.

Don't Forget - Schoology work with Mr. Watson, Thursday, during planning. Room 407

A few words from Dr. Neihof

I wanted to share something from Dr. Neihof's notes to principals that he sent last week. He was writing in reference to shifts and work being made at MLCHS. However, I can't help but connect it to East; where we are and where we are moving. Take a moment to read. We will share some thinking around this.


...I first head the term “school 2.0” in Don Tapscott’s book, Grown Up Digital. School 2.0 is a term he applies to schools in the process of becoming a truly student-centered place of learning and discovery while facing the hard wall of entrenched thinking about education. Here are Tapscotts’ 7 Strategies for becoming a 2.0 school:


  1. Focus on pedagogy not technology. Don’t throw technology into classrooms and hope for good things. Learning 2.0 is about dramatically changing the relationship between teacher and students in the learning process. Get that right and use technology for student-focused, customized, collaborative learning environment.
  2. Cut back on lecturing. You don’t have all the answers. Besides, that doesn’t work for most learners in this generation. Ask students questions and listen to their answers. Listen to their questions too. Let them discover and co-create learning with you.
  3. Empower students to collaborate. Encourage them to work together and show them how to access the world of subject matter experts available on the Web.
  4. Focus on lifelong learning, not teaching to the test. It’s what they know when they graduate that counts; it’s their capacity and love for learning that is important. Focus on teaching them how to learn – not what to know.
  5. Use technology to get to know each student and build self-paced, customized learning plans for them.
  6. Design your programs according to eight norms. Provide choice, customization, transparency, integrity, collaboration, fun, speed, and innovation in all learning experiences. Leverage the strengths of the Net Gen culture and behaviors in project-based learning.
  7. Reinvent yourself as a teacher or educator. You too can say, “Now I can hardly wait to get up in the morning to go to work!”

What's Happening at East?

Admin. Calendar -

Martin - Out Tuesday/Wednesday participating in External Review in Bullitt County; Friday - CO for Lead and Learn Day

Hale -

Wilt - Tues. a.m. OVOP meeting;

Jury -

Gift - @West Friday a.m.


East Events -

Monday - No School

Tuesday - Faculty mtg;

  • Boys Soccer tryouts
  • Play Meeting - 6:15 p.m. in Library
Wednesday - Scheduling Committee afterschool
  • Girls Soccer Tryouts

Thursday -

  • Girls Soccer Tryouts

Friday -

  • Girls Soccer Tryouts