In matter of 24 hours, these amazing things happened:
- A student made a 100 on that day’s test after a year of struggling with algebra.
- A school library was full of volunteers that support a Title I school. The principal described how every Kindergartner received a library of 50 books and over 100 families were served by the food pantry. This school is loved by so many.
- An after school program run by a high school junior presented their theater showcase. A shy quiet red head (my son) became brave and daring on the stage.
I share these stories because I came to realization (again) that so many great things happen in our schools daily. I also know that many happen quietly without much fanfare.
I am inspired by the #CelebrateMonday movement because it shares all of the positive things occurring in our schools. I love following district and school hashtags because it inspires me to think of all the positive things that are being shared.
In the same breath as thrilled as I am with the digital sharing, I wonder do friends and family know the great things. Do the neighbors know? Do the fellow educators in the building know? We need to become comfortable saying aloud the great things that happen at our school.
I am committing myself to sharing with friends, neighbors and others the good things that happen in the schoolroom. I want everyone in my city to be proud of the successes that happen in my district.
My challenge to you dear reader: Please don’t share just share digitally, talk to your friends, neighbors, and family about the good that happens daily in our schools.
Reading/Resources that inspired this:
On Friday, I was voxing with my friend, Sean and he said, “I think that there is always an excuse.” I didn’t think much of it. I laid out my gym clothes for the following morning. I wanted to enjoy my favorite classes. Saturday came and went, I did not go to the gym. I could give you an excuse about how my daughter woke me up in the middle of the night, the action packed week I had, or just say there is no tired like May teacher tired. Instead dear readers, I will own that choice. I chose to stay in bed because it was easier and to me at that point, it was more important to sleep instead of enjoying the gym.
During the day on Saturday, I still thought about that comment and my one word: commit. Am I committed when I give an excuse of why I can’t? If it is important enough to say yes to it, then it does not deserve an excuse. I am reminded that I need to recommit to my word and the work it requires.
Currently, there has been an increased focus on MTSS in my job. These questions also surfaced on Saturday. How often do we say that all kids can learn, but then we give an excuse why Johnny did not master the objective? Are we really serious about all students learning at high level or are we just giving it lip service? I ask these questions because it is time that we own our choices instead of giving an excuse to why this student didn’t learn. Once we give one excuse, then it allows many more to follow. Soon, student learning is not a priority and our statement that all students can learn is just decoration.
My challenge to us is to own our choices. If we chose to respond negatively because it is easier than to respond positively, don’t give an excuse. If you chose to wait until the students leave to pack up your room, own it.
My promise to you, dear readers is to reduce my excuses and create opportunities to do what is important to me. I will declutter my calendar and my life so I can enjoy this world. What are you going to do to remove the excuses in your life?
My current resources that are inspiring me:
Thanks Sean for planting seeds frequently in my brain. I promise to nurture and grow these ideas. You are a true thought partner.