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Showing posts from August, 2011

The best advice Baker ever gave me

Today is Roy Baker's birthday.  Dr. Baker was a great school leader who shepherded the Norris District through unprecedented growth and helped us come roaring back when a tornado decimated our campus.  More importantly to me, Roy is a friend and a mentor.

The best advice Baker ever gave me?  I'll share it with you:

"I don't care what somebody else says the message is.  The only thing that matters is what the message is based upon your actions."

Stay focused on results!

Baker's always done that.  He's wired that way.  I spoke with him this afternoon to wish him a happy b-day, asked what he was up to.  I had heard he'd been doing well in a local golf league paired up with Gary DeBoer.  Baker growled, "We actually lost today so we're going to get second."

No prizes for second and "Good is the enemy of great."  Keep striving and stay focused on results.

Happy Birthday, Doc.

Really simple advice from the Sup for our new teachers

When I say it's really simple, what I mean by that is that it's very easy for me to dispense advice.  Adhering to it could prove challenging!  But here are a few basic lessons to contemplate as you embark upon your teaching career at Norris:


Gratitude is the right attitude.  We are privileged to be in education and to have the opportunity to work with young people.  It is a wonderfully inspiring life to be an educator.  Be thankful you get to live this challenging and rewarding adventure!  We all have moments where the gratitude slips and the cynicism spikes, but let's not let those fleeting moments define us. The compassionate response is usually the correct one.  Students will frustrate you.  Their behaviors will perplex and annoy you.  And some of them, well, you'll find their limit-testing behaviors downright annoying.  The punitive reaction, though, will seldom bring about the results you really want.  If you're really about promoting positive relationships and…

Fitnessgram: A great tech tool for assessing student health & fitness in schools

For Leadership Day 2011, educational leaders have been invited to blog about whatever we like related to effective school technology leadership: successes, challenges, reflections, needs, wants, resources, ideas, etc.  What a cool idea!  It's a great invite to push and promote these resources with one another.  Info on this is available at @mccleod's "Calling all bloggers!" post at http://bigthink.com/ideas/39450


I'd like to tell you about Fitnessgram and encourage your school to consider adoption of this tech tool.  One of the things I am most passionate about as an educator is the connection between health and academic achievement.  Ever since I read my Maslow in my early Ed Psych courses as a pre-service teacher, the correlation resonated.  I realized there is a profound simplicity and truth in prioritizing health, safety, and belonging needs and that doing so in education is essential if we want students to be able to perform complex cognitive tasks.  Simply p…

10 Web Resources to Galvanize Your School’s Commitment to Coordinated School Health

There are many ways and many resources, but here are some external resources I’ve found helpful and hope you do, too:

http://www.education.ne.gov/HEALTH/PDFs/CSHPolicy3-1-10.pdfThe Nebraska statewide Coordinated School Health Policy, adopted March, 2010
http://healthylincoln.org/#resources.htmlPartnership For A Healthy Lincoln offers resources including national and local trend data on the obesity epidemic.
http://www.letsmove.gov/schoolsAction steps from the Let’s Move! campaign to assist schools.
http://sss.mpls.k12.mn.us/sites/6c9fd336-96c5-451c-a8a6-b6f00373668d/uploads/appendixF_celebrations_alternatives.pdfHealthy alternatives to the traditional ‘junk food as reward’ classroom celebrations offered by the CT Department of Education.
http://www.ahealthieramerica.org/chefs-move-to-schools.htmlInformation from the Partnership for a Healthier America about the Chefs Move! To Schools campaign to place visiting chefs in schools to help educate children about healthy eating.
http://www.healt…