Personal Best Staff Bulletin
Vol IV, No. 1 September 9, 2015
Opening of School: Sharing your passions!
I want to thank and commend everyone for an excellent opening of school. Despite the heat wave that confounded our efforts to stay cool physically, you are the coolest group of teachers I know.
What struck me most as I visited classrooms these first two weeks of school is the way you shared your passion with your students. I have come to believe that “learning” is a powerful and natural human impulse. Everyone enjoys learning. In it is so exciting to learn new things. Personally, my passion for learning only grows as I get older.
This is equally true for our students. Anyone who has ever watched our kids work their way up the various levels of a video game, or struggle to learn a sport or a musical instrument can attest to the fact that our kids love to learn. The problem of course is that they do not always have a passion to learn the things we are charged with teaching them. So what is a teacher to do?
As I visited your classrooms on the first days of school, it was inspiring to see you share your passions with your students. If we are passionate about what we do, then this will become contagious for our students. Mathematics, literature, art, science, technology, physical education, history, languages… all of these disciplines come from our attempts to understand and explain our experiences of the world. Although a 12-year-old might not naturally feel compelled to jump into these areas, when we share our passion for these subjects and show them connections to their own experiences and the questions they struggle with, they will be eager to learn alongside us. I saw teachers doing this all over the building this past week and a half.
I look forward to another exciting year learning with you.
Joe Wiener did a wonderful job with the Code of Conduct assemblies. Joseph and I have been talking about how deadly boring these assemblies can be. Joseph has a wonderful way of explaining things to kids in a way that is clear, firm, but most important, compassionate. The kids know that he is here for them whenever they have a problem or they are facing a challenge. It helps that he is also one of the funniest people in the building. The kids really enjoyed his line, "Oh, you like him, you want to have a thousand of his babies. "