Freshman Center Free Press
December 18, 2015
The Good Stuff!
I hope you are able to take a breath and have some time to recharge your batteries. It is okay to be a little selfish and make time for yourself! In fact, that is very healthy.
If you are traveling, be safe and have the time of your life at wherever your destination may be! Take awesome pictures of the beautiful weather or breath taking landscapes. Even though those of us that stay home will be jealous, we still want to see your adventures!
If you are staying home, you still have the RIGHT to have fun and relax. According to Forbes magazine, "The trick to enjoying a staycation is to deviate from daily routines and truly make it a vacation. If you enjoy eating out on vacations, do the same on your staycation. Don’t do the laundry or clean the garage, or other household projects. Relax. As odd as it sounds, bring discipline to the vacation by not allowing chores or drudgery to intercede and take away the fun. Remind yourself that, while you are at home, you still are on vacation. If you do so, a staycation can be more relaxing and fun..."
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
The Marshall Memo is a weekly round up of important ideas and research in K-12 education distributed by Kim Marshall, a well respected educator and leader in the field.
Below is a a interesting summary of an article, “What Makes a Good Teacher?” by A.C. Grayling in The Chronicle of Higher Education, December 11, 2015 (Vol. LXII, #15, p. B4-B5).
In this Chronicle of Higher Education article, A.C. Grayling (New College of the Humanities, London) says there are two ways that ineffective teachers can harm students: putting them off a subject and undermining their confidence and self-belief. “Good teachers do exactly the opposite of these things,” says Grayling, “and as a result inspire, guide, and give their students a broader sense of life’s possibilities… the desire to know more, understand more, achieve greater insight.” He lists several qualities that the best teachers possess:
- Enthusiasm – Students often catch this in their classrooms.
- Charisma – Teachers can be Pied Pipers for their subject.
- A capacity to clarify and make sense – This quality illuminates any subject.
- Humor – It lightens the hard work students need to do.
- Kindness – A teacher’s power is enhanced when there’s a human connection.
- A genuine interest in students’ progress – This involves constantly checking for understanding and responding accordingly.
Good teachers have these qualities in varying proportions, and the net effect is that students begin to teach themselves. “And that, paradoxical as it may seem, is the best outcome of good teaching,” says Grayling. “Independence of endeavor, and soon therefore of mind, should be one of the fundamental aims of education.”
Some novice teachers worry that if they show humor, kindness, and interest, they’ll come across as weak. But Grayling says there’s “no inconsistency in being both kind and firm, humorous although not prepared to tolerate messing about, and interested without being partial. It is a matter of operational tact and good timing.”
“Good teachers are those who remember being a student,” he concludes. “They hear themselves as their students hear them. They know which aspects of their subject might present a difficulty, which require to be grasped before which, and what their best students will be keen to know, and why… Students’ questions and doubts compel one to think and rethink, often prompting one to see things that had not been noticed before. For this reason it is never boring to teach the same subject repeatedly.”
December 21 - January 1 - Holiday Break
January 4 - First Day Back from Break
January 8 - Friday Breakfast - Electives
January 11 - Board of Education Meeting - Central Office - 7:30pm
January 15 - Friday Breakfast - Modern Language
January 19 - Developing Healthy Kids - What is My Teenager Thinking? - 6:30pm
January 20 - Parent/Teacher Conferences - 3:30pm - 5:30pm
January 21 - Parent/Teacher Conferences - 6:00pm - 8:00pm
January 25 - Board of Education Meeting - Central Office - 7:30pm
January 27 - Late Start DPPD
January 29 - Friday Breakfast - Math