Motivation

Jim Rohn once said, “If someone is going down the wrong road, he doesn’t need motivation to speed him up. What he needs is an education to turn him around.”

Think about any students you feel might be headed down the wrong road. What educational opportunities are your providing in an effort to educate. What supports are you providing to turn these students around?

Obstacles

Henry Ford once said, “Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes of your goal.”

Think about specific goals you have set this year, either for yourself as a teacher or your students. How often do you revisit and evaluate those goals? What plans do you have in place when you encounter some obstacles? How often do you revise your goals?

Off the Beaten Path

Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”

As I reflect on both this quote and my own teaching practices, I am reminded of some big adjustments made to my own teaching this year. These changes, though difficult, have added rich peer to peer discourse opportunities for students and compelled me to interact more with students in a positive manner, thus allowing increased opportunities for students to be pushed and excel to new levels.

When is the last time you have truly reflected on your teaching experiences? What is one thing you can do at this mid-year point to step out of your comfort zone and enhance your day to day teaching?

Planting a Seed

Linda Conway once said, “It is not what is poured into a student that counts, but what is planted.”

Think about your class. What kinds of seeds are you planting for them? What kinds of opportunities are being provided for those seeds to blossom? What kinds of differentiated experiences are you providing to make sure that ALL students are successful?

Learning by Example

Malcom Gladwell once said, “We learn by example and by direct experience because there are real limits to the adequacy of verbal instruction.”

Think about a typical day in your classroom. How many times are you “showing” students how to do something instead of telling them? What opportunities are you providing for them to interact with each other to explain their thinking?

Think about increasing the opportunities for peer-to-peer discourse activities in your classroom. What might that look like? Sound like?

New Year’s Resolution

As my holiday break came to an end, a friend commented to me about all the time off I get in the winter. While that sounded so nice to me at the time, I quickly reminded him that this is crunch time as we prepare for the Spring Testing Season.

In terms of a New Year’s resolution, I have promised myself to focus on each day at a time instead of being overwhelmed with all the little stuff. I have promised myself to note one 1-2 positive things that happen each day with my students and 1 thing I need to improve on the next day.

Think about your New Year’s Resolutions.   What can you do to make your students feel more successful during this next stretch of learning?