Learning Walk, Pt. I

I was sitting in an English classroom. A room full of junior level students. For the most part, they are highly motivated. They all have good grades and are all genuinely good, nice people. I know this because I know every single one of them by name. They are not, contrary to popular belief about kids who take either honors or advanced level courses, all involved in school activities – whether it be clubs, athletics, or any other type of extra-curricular activity. I was able to, however, from my perch in the very rear of the classroom, see that there were a good number who are … Continue reading Learning Walk, Pt. I

Living Your Best Life

I had a conversation with a student toward the end of the year – it was just a quick chat in the hallway – while she was on her way to class.  She was late and I knew she hadn’t been here the day prior, and so I wanted to quick follow up with her on a conversation we had had earlier in the week.  Coincidentally, I ran into her in the hallway on that day as well. (Sidebar – I think our most productive conversations might be had in the hallway, on the off-chance we run into someone and … Continue reading Living Your Best Life

REPLACEABLE

I sometimes wonder what my school would be like without me in it.  Without me here every day, greeting kids and visiting classrooms and walking through the hallways and meeting with teachers and talking to students and… the list goes on. And I wonder what teachers feel as well.  Not about me, but about themselves.  If they wonder what their classrooms would be like without them.  If they wonder about the school they spend so much of their lives in,and what would happen if they were no longer there.If they care about that.Because they should. I have a feeling that … Continue reading REPLACEABLE

Constantly Examining

I wrote previously that culture is about knowing who you are and about knowing your people, and about how you can’t know your people unless you know yourself and where you’re coming from and your emotions and where your head and heart are at. The next step, after making sure you have those pieces in place to the best of your ability, is to align your core beliefs with your daily actions so that people who work in the organization understand that this is who we are, and this is just what we do here. Everybody in the establishment needs to understand … Continue reading Constantly Examining

The Most Soul- and Mind-Inspiring Places

“Schools should be the richest and most soul- and mind-inspiring places they can be.”I saw this quote somewhere and wrote it down in a safe place.  So safe that I just ran across it again years later.  A quick Google search did not immediately reveal the source of the quote, so for now it remains anonymous.  I know it is from some book I’ve read, and I’m so very thankful that I ran across it again.  So let’s look at this a little bit and try to understand what it means to be the richest and most soul- and mind-inspiring place. … Continue reading The Most Soul- and Mind-Inspiring Places

Through a culmination of life events, on-time choices and a few perchance happenings in my life, I have found myself wanting to be the most successful in the world at what I do. And it is not really even a want.It is a need,It is a burning desire.  And I know how this sounds. I know this sounds gluttonous, perhaps, or even a little over the top and unnecessary and a little like perfectionist theory when we are usually telling kids to stop trying to be perfect and that no one is perfect – just be the best version of you.But I would … Continue reading

Great Leaders

“If the bottom line of life is happiness, then it makes perfect sense to say that it is the journey that counts, not reaching the destination.” ~Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi (repost from a previous blog post) What do great leaders do differently from leaders? What separates an average leader from an extraordinary leader? One characteristic that has been weighing heavily on my mind of late is attitude. Great leaders set the example and must remember that everything counts. My office is housed upstairs in our school, and the quarters are, to say the least, cramped. It can be difficult to stay positive … Continue reading Great Leaders

The Rest of the Story, Pt. 1

Listen. I have to tell you this story. It’s one you may not have heard before, except in bits and pieces. And they are all important pieces, believe me, but they will make more sense once you see the whole picture. The toddler came through the main entrance of the apartment complex and out into the bright sunshine with her mother following closely behind. It was a cool day and a light snow had fallen earlier that morning. At the moment, standing on the sidewalk outside the complex, I had a feeling run through me similar to the one I … Continue reading The Rest of the Story, Pt. 1

Simple Thoughts

I wonder about the impact I’m having. Seriously. I think about it every day. I crawl back into what is simple, into what is easy, and I try to rationalize with myself. I try and tell myself that I am doing the best that I can. That what I am doing is working. As I stare at the empty page of my planner, Wondering what I can write down. Wondering what I can say that will, perhaps, Be meaningful. Make a difference. And I come up empty. For today, anyway, I still wonder about the impact I’m having. Continue reading Simple Thoughts

Delegate. Drop. Empower.

One of the things I don’t do well is delegate. I have to admit that I am really quite bad at it, and that this has been on my mind a lot lately. Probably as a result of my Accountability partners – those people with whom I speak multiple times a week, if not daily. They hold me accountable, ask how I’m doing, if I’ve kept up with my commitments, and they do so in the nicest way possible. Truly, I think if they approached and took the stance of, “Why haven’t you done this yet like you said you … Continue reading Delegate. Drop. Empower.