Oakwood Principal's Office

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Outside of the Box and Creativity from different perspectives.

The fearless Nicolas Cage

Nicholas Cage shares why he likes outside of the box thinking

"Let's take chances. Let's keep trying new things. That's how you reinvent yourself. That's how you stay fresh." ~Nicholas Cage CBS This Morning Interview.

Nicholas Cage has been a very successful actor for 35+ years and Outside of the Box thinking in his character portrayals have played a huge part in his successes. When you reach the end of your career in education, how will you describe your approach to being the best you can be?


Sara Almeda is a Sophmore in High School Sharing her thoughts on Education

Sara created the presentation "Let's Make Some Good Art" as a part of her class project on creativity. The rubric for the class project can be seen here. The following items were required to be addressed as a part of the project:

  • Tell the group about your creative self. Explain how you are creative (what’s your medium?).
  • Tell when you feel the most inspired.
  • What stifles your creativity?
  • Tell us about (at least) one other person whose creativity you admire, and how he or she inspires you.
  • Explain what you believe schools need to do better for students to promote, enhance their creativity. Provide an example of something that would have helped you to be more creative or something/someone who did help you.

Take a few moments to watch and more importantly listen to what Sara has to say.


Sara Takes a minute to thank....

Watch to see who was an inspiration to Sarah and why.

My Challenge to You

Take a few minutes to watch the videos above. I happened to catch the interview of Nicholas Cage this morning. What he had to say really struck a chord with me and what we have been talking about this year at Oakwood. He really sums up why outside of the box thinking is important and relevant. "...stay fresh, ...reinvent yourself, ...try new things" are all the reasons for thinking differently.

Like his movies or not, one thing about Nicholas Cage is that he is always willing to push his acting to the limit by taking on a wide variety of parts and puts his own perspective to the parts he plays. He is not a typecast type of an actor, instead he really adapts himself to the part he is playing. He is always pushing himself to be better by thinking differently.

The next two videos were posted by a principal from New Jersey that I follow on Twitter. You can read the principal's blog here. Dr. Coulson forwarded the blog link to all the principals in the district because this is a great example of what creativity and choice can allow for students. Sarah did not know that the first video would end up making its way around the world but after you watch it I think you will see why people like it.

I like it because it is a wonderful demonstration of the creativity of students and a peek into the mind of a young person that is willing to share her thoughts on the American education process. For me, it is the perfect example of how choice, creativity, customization, relationships, relevance, and rigor can be demonstrated in student learning.

Her follow up video was impactful on me because she discussed why a specific teacher was unique and stood out to her. As we have discussed before: Long after students leave our classrooms they will not remember the subject matter we taught them but they will remember the relationship they built with us and how they felt in our classrooms.

Think outside of your box. Be brave enough to let students fail. If you have a good relationship with your students in a classroom that promotes free thinking and risk taking then you will be amazed at what your students can and will do for you.

Think. Achieve. Succeed.



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10 things to inspire creativity with students...

Take a look at this blog posting from Venspired. There are 10 different ideas to help inspire creativity in the classroom. Enjoy!


Week at a Glance

Monday: Campus Leadership Team Meeting 4:15 Library

Tuesday: Foundations Team Meeting 4:15 Library

Wednesday: AVID College Day--Jeans allowed with College Shirt; Success Team Meeting; District RtI Meeting; PTO Meeting 12pm Library

Thursday: Universal Design for Learning

Friday: Universal Design for Learning

  • Marla and Jeff will be at the District Success Team meeting. Jeff will have a district RtI meeting after Success Team.
  • Jeff was asked to attend a Universal Design for Learning program on behalf of Oakwood. This is a district level initiative. If you want more specific information related to UDL, click here.