Be Still and Listen

Robyn Jackson once said, “When teachers help too much, they reinforce the idea that it’s about getting it right and not about the struggle for learning.”

I will be the first to admit, as a 22 year veteran teacher, I still struggle with letting go so the kids can “struggle”.   However, when I/we do let go, the results are amazing. Think about one tweak you can make to your instruction that allows for more student led discourse.

Food for Thought:

Increased opportunities for students to share thinking and/or explain thinking

Celebrate successes as a class

Let students “work through” the struggles


Eliphas Levi once said, “A good teacher must be able to put himself in the place of those who find learning hard.”

As the first six weeks of school comes to an end and one round of assessments under our belts, it is time to stop and think about what we are doing to meet the needs of ALL students, especially those who are clearly struggling. What plans are set in place for these students to succeed?

Food for Thought:

Targeted and Differentiated Instruction to address immediate gaps

Frequent communication with parents and families regarding progress

Accountability for every student

Winding Down

Dear Colleagues,

As we approach the final weeks of another school year, take time to reflect. Think about the Top 10 and Low 10. Are you sending them with tools to succeed in the next grade?

Food for Thought:

  • Reflect on Strengths and Challenges
  • Reflect on current interventions
  • Think about next steps – what can you share with new teacher that will make this child successful


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?


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?


We should always remember that ALL of our students, no matter what their capabilities, deserve the best. All students are capable of learning. Effective educators never give up on individual students. However, we should think about how we balance our efforts to help children succeed.

This task of wanting all of our students to succeed can become stressful at times. Hence, lies the reality that we are not able to solve every problem.   We must not forget that. What does matter is that we are getting our kids to progress in some way, shape, or form. Think about the student who had a 40% average coming in at the start of a new year. At year-end, this same student has a 50% average? Growth?? Absolutely.   It’s these small milestones sometimes that we should focus on and celebrate along the way.

Think about some ways you manage stress when it begins to become a burden for your day to teaching. What do you do to take care of yourself? When you feel overworked trying to be the superhero, what can you do? How do you turn that “stress” off? Have you ever thought about laughing with your students?