Reach for the Stars

Christopher Reddy once said, “Assumptions are the root cause of poor instruction.”

What kinds of assumptions do you make about your students? What can you do to prove these assumptions wrong? What kinds of opportunities can you provide for your students to reach their full potential?




Pele once said “Success is no accident.  It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice, and most of all, love of what you are doing.”

What kinds of sacrifices do you make for your students to be successful?  What is one thing you can do to bring you back to the “love” of teaching?


Always the Best

John Wooden once said “Things work best for those who make the best out of how things work out.”

I find myself reflecting on all the assessment data that I have collected this year.  With some time still left, I wonder what I can do to make sure kids meet their proficiency targets.

What am I going to “tweak” in my day – to – day instruction?  I know my students are very capable and it is my responsibility to guide them in the right direction.

Think about what you do to make the best out of difficult situations, such as data analysis and/or a data meeting with your Principal or Department Chair.  Do you react or are you proactive, working to create a plan to ensuring that everything works out the way it should?


Appreciation ALL Around

I recently read an editorial in the local paper about telling teachers they have made a difference on Teacher Appreciation Day and/or week.  While I agree with the author to some extent, I often find myself wondering how many students, families, and/or parents I have thanked for making a difference. We ALL like to be appreciated and thanked for our hard work.

Parents and families are JUST as important as teachers and must also be thanked and appreciated.

Think about a parent and/or family that has really made a difference in your classroom this year.  Take a moment to thank them.  Perhaps invite them in for an Appreciation or Recognition Night.



A Moment in Time

Mother Teresa once said “Be HAPPY in the moment – that’s enough.  Each moment is all we NEED – not more.”

How many “moments” do we miss on a given day with our students?  Think about capturing a moment each day with your students.  What would that look like?  How can you use these moments to improve teaching and learning in your classroom?




Survey Says…..

During a recent class meeting with my 4th graders, they were sharing both their positive and negative experiences with all the mandated testing.  After listening to them, I posed three questions for them: 1. What is your perspective on testing?, 2. What is your perspective on being a 4th grade student?, and 3. What else would you like me to know about your feelings, as related to school?

In their words:


  • takes too much time
  • make it easier by cutting the amount of tests
  • would be so much easier for me if there were no time constraints
  • makes me feel stressed out
  • timing us makes us get worried we will not finish
  • short amounts if testing each day makes it easy
  • makes me nervous and anxious
  • could be easier if we had short breaks
  • pacing and timing make it difficult to focus and do my best
  • would be easier if my teacher could explain things to me when stuck on questions

Being a Fourth Grader:

  • is hard most of the time
  • makes me feel like a stronger individual
  • tough
  • fills my brain with information
  • a struggle for me
  • makes me feel like a better student
  • challenging
  • fun and easy
  • hard work most of the time

Other Feelings about School:

  • Great teacher
  • Need Recess
  • My teacher is firm and fair
  • Give me more independent work
  • Love my class
  • Why do we have assigned seats?
  • Gets better for me each day
  • Give me more homework
  • My teacher pushes me to excel and always do my best


How often do you “listen” to your students?  Do you take their feedback and act on it?  What have you done to actively involve our students throughout the day, week, and/or year?  Have you used their “voices” to make a positive impact on teaching and learning in your classroom and/or school?