Let the Light In

Leonard Cohen once said, “There’s a crack in everything – that’s how the lights get in.”

As the First Marking period is nearing an end for many of us, I stop to think and ask myself what opportunities have I provided for students to let their light shine. For some students, this might mean setting them up for success.

Food for Thought:

Differentiated Instruction for ALL students

Celebrate every success

Set achievable goals with students

Clear up misinterpretations in the moment



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?

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?

Reach Out and Share

Og Mandino once said, “Realize that true happiness lies within you. Waste no time and effort searching for peace and contentment and joy in the world outside. Remember that there is no happiness in having or in getting, but only in GIVING. Reach out. Share. Smile. Hug.”

What are you giving to your students and/or parents? Make sure that you reach out, smile, and hug each and every day.

Learn, Do, Teach

Richard Bach once said, “Learning is finding out what we already know. Doing is demonstrating that you know it. Teaching is reminding others that they know just as well as you. You are all learners, doers, and teachers.”

What opportunities are you providing for students to learn and do? Have you created any opportunities for them to “teach”?