Wednesday, January 28, 2015

More Time #SAVMP

I have a problem.  I am inattentive, unfocused and easily (VERY) distractable.  It is one of the more major roadblocks in life, not just job, that I tackle everyday.  I've learned over time that this is a good thing, job wise, because I can and do exercise some control over myself!  HA!  Now, being and elementary school administrator, this problem is sometimes compounded by being at a school of near 800 students, 60+ staff members that need time and attention various ways throughout the day.  It has the possibility to become something quite like a perfect storm of inefficiency  without some specific supports and strategies in place (this is now sounding like an RtI meeting, is it might say I'm a tier 3 for time management!)

Often an easy go-to answer (wishful thought more like) is to say I need "more time".  But the truth of the matter is that even if we had more time, we would always have the same issue, With more time

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

How Are You Measuring That?

Success is how your customers feel. How are you measuring that? 
Jiwa, Bernadette (2014-09-30). Marketing: A Love Story: How to Matter to Your Customers (p. 73). The Story of Telling Press. Kindle Edition. 
Read this and it really struck me.  We spend so much time setting goals and being very quantitative
about the things we are focused on instructionally.  We set up formative assessment processes, we discuss data in PLC meetings, we put the data up on the wall and/or student binders and it tells a story of learning.  We plan interventions and hopefully take the time to celebrate success!!  All of these are great things!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

8 Great Places to Pull Content for Your School Social Media Pages

If you read anything regarding highly successful blogs and/or social media pages, you will hear quality content is king!  There has to be something worth following for any person to return or  in some cases click unfollow or unlike buttons.  For your school's social media page, it is likely that informationcelebration and C&I posts will keep most coming back as far as content goes.  There is little more satisfying to parents and families than getting to see the great things that are happening in their child's school.  It is also important to grow the opportunities for learning and engagement within your community.  So when it comes to growing your learning and engagement postings, it is important to have some go to resources.

This past few weeks I've been reviewing and updating our campus to make that as valuable resource to our families as possible, I was reminded of some gems I had tapped previously to help curate content and led me to some other great resources as well.

District News Page - It is important that we are supporting the work of the larger organizition we are apart of.  Our district just completed education foundation grant awarding and it was fun to share those celebration with our fellow campuses and award winners!
Campus, State, National PTA Sites - ther are few greater advocate for the work schools do than the PTA so helping our campus group advertise events and celebrate the work they are doing is vital.  State and national organization accounts post many great resources for parents on how to support schools, their teachers, their students!  These are great to add to your feed!
Common Sense Media - these are the gurus of digital citizenship and they post great information for parents to support their kiddos in navigating the digital world!  You can also find them on the Facebook!
Graphite - the best description comes from their Twitter page: "Graphite, a free service from Common Sense Media, helps teachers find, understand, and share the best digital learning products available." While they do teachers are their focus, so many of their resources on apps and programs are very helpful to our families!
MyTownTutors - this groups entire mission is connecting parents with resources to help support their kiddos at school.  While their name does imply that their focus is tutoring, follow their feed and you'll see that they are more than just connecting parents with tutors!  Great folks there!
Teacher Help for Parents - this is a blog by a teacher turned stay at home mom that desires to keep parents informed and connected in the best way possible to support their students!  She has always posts some of the most helpful resources that we have passed along to our families!
#PTChat - this is the premier twitter hashtag for parent/teacher resources.  A quick search/link to this hashtag will provide a generous helping of resources for the campus and parent of any level student.  It is the brainchild Joe Mazza, their weekly Wednesday evening chat is frequented by Twitter greats such as Ted Huff, and Gwen Pescatore and is populated by parents, teachers and administrators
talking best practices and solutions for our schools!  Powerful conversations are happening here!
Pragmatic Mom - notice is link is to pintrest!!  Ha!   I have not seen too many things that aren't wonderful from her.  Based on the content she shares, Pintrest is an ideal platform for her.  You can also find her on the Twitter.  She is a great literacy advocate, so of course I am a fan!

I believe the greatest benefit in having great learning and engagement content is that it allows us to move towards empowerment and partnership with our families (see graphic).  If we want to be able to move our schools in the direction we know is best, we have to invest in educating and informing  the folks that spend the most time with our kids!

Happy posting!


Friday, January 9, 2015

#APrincipalsDay Reflection

Emergency drills with Kindergarten!
31 degrees and windy!  Brrr!
Wednesday, EdWeek, asked principals to share glimpses of their day with the hashtag #APrincipalsDay.  What a beautiful idea to help inform an upcoming highlight of principals that will be coming out.  I, being active on Twitter, even though I'm not a principal yet, jumped in and shared.
The day was highlighted with freezing my face off at morning duty, ARD/IEP meetings, some informal classroom visits, working with students during emergency drills, phone calls with parents, some assessment prep (joy!) and of course shuffling some paper!

TELPAS & 504s!
It reminded me:
I work with an amazing team!
  • I love so many aspects my job!
  • I understand the value & importance of the parts I don't love as much!
  • Student success is won daily/hourly in the time spent, conversations had, partnerships created!
  • Kids & teachers are awesome!
  • The journey I'm on toward the principalship goal is worth it!

Hope everyone else found it as motivating and encouraging as I did!  What were some of your highlights!?  Share!

Happy Leading!


Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Six Ways to Become Part of Our Families' Stories

Flipping the talk for this post.  I often post on the school story and the narrative that unfolds on a daily basis when kiddos walk through the door.  An important part of the connection is becoming part of others' stories.  Where do we stand when it comes where school as our students' and families' stories unfold?  So much time and energy is spent by all in the work that we do, we want to be a positive highlight in that story and in turn when our students and families share those stories, our schools have the opportunity to shine!
  1. Create compelling content or a great product or service that people enjoy using or coming back for - the experience we create and design for our families has a tremendous impact on

Thursday, January 1, 2015

2014 Blog Review

2014 was certainly an interesting year professionally with many great highlights to celebrate as well as many great jumping points for continued growth and learning.  Over the last couple weeks, I've seen/read numerous posts with a blog review and since I have one that I am keeping current, I thought it would be a great idea to take some time to reflect and review.  Probably my favorite review I saw was from Jessica Johnson (@principalJ).  As well as sharing some thoughts and top posts, she shared a Wordle created from her blog RSS feed.  I thought this was a brilliant way to see if I was staying accountable to what I wanted by blog to be.  Was I staying true to my stated purposes and enhance the identity I wish to develop!?