Tuesday, January 28, 2014

The eye opening realization that really happened!

Kids nowadays.  I listen to adults often talk about how kids don't know how to play, kids don't know what hard work truly is, kids don't understand the importance of a handshake and some even say they are worried about the future because our kids lack social skills.  Some adults believe kids are too plugged in.  Really? 

I won't give up on our kids, I won't believe they will be inept.  This is what I believe, times change.  I hear references to the Good Ol' Days. Really?  Were they really that good?  Is today really that bad?


Check out these pictures.  Look at the engagement, the creativity and the joy in the faces.  

Is one of these right and the other wrong?  I say no.  They're different.  That is what we all must understand and accept.  Times have changed.  
Not convinced...


This is what some think of when they talk about "plugged in".  Today's society always seems to have a device in hand.  People don't interact like they used to.  Really? 


So this was the Good Ol' Days?

My point is this, times change.  I don't believe one is right and one is wrong.  I believe they are different and because they are different we need to adjust and change.

Last weekend I attended the Boyne City UnConference.  I had an eye opening conversation with Steve Kelly - @bigkxcountry
Steve spoke with a 20 year veteran teacher, who has been successful throughout his career.  He attended the conference and said, "Things have changed, kids have changed, I need to reinvent learning in my classroom.  I need to reinvent myself as an educator."

Wow.  What a profound statement.  Someone that has been successful has come to the realization that staying the same or doing things the way they've always been done will not cut it in today's classroom.

We've all heard the saying, "Time heals all wounds", I believe time does more than that.  The longer time passes the more we give it a mystique.  We forget some struggles and heartaches and remember what we choose to.

The way we've always done things may have worked in the past.  I urge you to be honest with yourself.  Three essentials stand out to me:

1) Differentiation
2) Listening
3) Humor

Check out this tweet from David Tebo - 



If a child can't learn the way we teach, maybe we should teach the way they learn. Are you learner centered? ALL kids means ALL kids!

Differentiation: This is a must...but what does it really look like? 
1- Communicate with parents that your classroom is not a one-size fits all.  Be positive and own it!
2- Start small, give students choice when it comes to reading & writing.
3- Learn the ins & outs of your students.  What makes them tick...
4- Figure out how each student learns best, are they visual, hands-on, auditory...
5- Formative assess often!
6- Provide lots of opportunities for students to show what they learned.
7- Actively pursue feedback from parents, students and colleagues.  Reflect and grow from feedback.

Listening:  This is also essential in all classrooms.  Put yourself in your students shoes, is the environment safe?  Can I take a risk without being ridiculed?  Do I have a voice in the classroom?  As a teacher I felt awful when I didn't talk with each of my students on a daily basis...don't let this happen in your classroom.

Humor:  I know what your thinking, humor?  We model for our students every day.  We model by our words, what we wear, and how we react.  Most educators want students to be willing to try new things and persevere, yet not all teachers openly try new things.  How many educators laugh at themselves when they make mistakes?  I dare say...not enough.  Educators need to install more humor, try new things, be willing to fall on your face.  Sometimes we take ourselves way too serious.  I believe we need to be willing to laugh at ourselves. 

I'm proud of the gentleman that is taking steps to reinvent himself.  It's a difficult thing to do.  Many people would simply say, "What I've always done has worked, I don't need to change."  Not this educator...he is going to venture down the bumpy road of change!

This Week's Big Question:  If you were talking to this 20 year veteran what would you have said to him?

Articles Worth Reading:
8 Lessons Learned on Differentiated Instruction  @scholasticteach
The Diverse Learner in an Elementary School +Jenny Nauman @PrincipalNauman
What Really Needs To Be Reformed? +Peter DeWitt @PeterMDeWitt
7 Tips for Parents of Struggling Readers +Terry Heick @TeachThought
30 Indoor Recess Ideas +Charity Preston @theOCBlog
Removing Rules from Playgrounds... shared by +Breanna Davey @studiobree
What students say when they think we're not listening check out #26 & #29 by @dianemain
Early Call for Snowday leads to Twitter Stardom shared by @joelgagne
Slice of Life: Living "Ishfully" Ever After by @ClareandTammy shared by @litlearningzone
Change Your Perspective +Colin Wikan @ColinWikan

Videos Worth Watching:
@TheEllenShow shares some hilarious auto-corrects that happened to people! (3 min)





13 Story Tree House...looks like a great read. shared by @colbysharp  (1 min)





Great story about a families journey & perseverance. (12 min)


Sunday, January 26, 2014

Hope & Expectation


Growing up the son of a golf professional created some lofty expectations.  As a junior golfer I remember standing by scoreboards and putting greens and hearing people mention my last name.  At first, people only knew me because of my last name.  I distinctly remember standing by a scoreboard after posting a decent score.  A group of people approximately 15 feet away were talking about me. One comment will always stick in my head..."You know Gilpin's gotta be a good player, just look at who his dad is."  I remember chuckling to myself.  I didn't typically get bothered by the increased expectation. In fact, I sorta liked it.  The expectation that I was good, just based on my last name, pushed me to work hard and live up to it.

My point is this, expectations are a mindset.

I learned at a young age that I can only control one person...myself.  I remember life lessons from my grandfather, my dad, and one of my first bosses, Wally Sierakowski.  I'm grateful for all the lessons I learned from them.  I also found life experiences to be a valuable learning tool.

During my freshman year I remember talking to my dad.  I was blaming one of our losses on a senior.  I cited his poor round and the closeness of the match.  My dad told me, "Bologna. You win as a team...you lose as a team."  Simple as that.  Once again I was learning life lessons.  

My experiences growing up have shaped who I am today.  I do believe we are all shaped by our experiences.  I feel as though I look for the best in all people, but it's important to say that I truly hope for the best, not necessarily expect it.

As an adult I expect many things out of myself, but instead of expecting them from others, I always hope for the best.  For example...

I hope teachers will prepare strong lessons that engage all students.

I hope staff will reflect on the day's events and look for areas to celebrate and grow.

I hope students will ask questions and put forth their best effort.

I hope parents will take an interest in their child's education.

I hope all staff will help foster a love of learning.

_________________________________________________________________________________

Those are my hopes, but I do have one expectation for others to follow. I expect professionalism.

What does it mean to be a professional?

pro·fes·sion·al

  [pruh-fesh-uh-nl] 
adjective
1.
following an occupation as a means of livelihood or for gain: professional builder.
2.
of, pertaining to, or connected with a professionprofessional studies. 

This is the dictionary definition of a professional.  I can only speak for myself, but I view Educators as Professionals in a layered view.
I realize professionalism can be a lot of things, and that's okay. 

Being professional is general; in a way, vague. It can include attire/dress, conversations with parents, dealings with colleagues, what we post on social media and even disposition.  This is why I see it as layered. Professionalism is a critical piece of who we are and what we do.

We've all heard the saying - 

Educators can take note.  As professionals our words say a lot.  What we say in the lounge matters, what we say to substitute teachers matters, what we put in emails and newsletters matter.  

I didn't always realize the impact of words and disposition.  Some time ago I was approached by a volunteer.  She asked to meet with me.  She began with a compliment.  She shared a compliment about a teacher.  She said, "I don't have any students at Warner, but I'm so impressed with __________.  This teacher loves kids!"  She went on to talk about stumbling upon a conversation where the teacher was talking with another teacher and they were sharing student successes.  As we continued to talk in the office she then said to me, I volunteer and work in many schools, most of the time I hear dissent and negativity...but I love being here because I see staff members that are all about kids. 

Our words matter.  You never know who is listening or watching.  

I don't think all educators look at themselves as professionals.  I wish they did.  Educators are professionals and because of this we should take pride in all things education.

I have always tried to be positive, honest and dedicated.  It's true, I hope for a lot of things...but I have always and will always expect professionalism.

This Week's Big Question:  Do you view yourself as a professional?


Next Week At A Glance:

Monday, January 27th: 1pm 1:1 Tech Meeting
Monday, January 27th:  Little Caesars Pizza Kits due
Tuesday, January 28th:  TEAM meeting beginning at 9am
Tuesday, January 28th:  Mobile Dentist visit
Wednesday, January 29th:  Grades 3-5 assembly with SAU basketball team in gym
Wednesday, January 29th:  TAT at 2:55
Wednesday, January 29th:  Sarah from Time For Kids will be hear to speak with all grades during lunch or in classrooms.  Look for a schedule on Monday.
Thursday, January 30th:  iCreate Assembly/Field Trip to Westwinds for grades 3-5
Friday, January 31st:  Western High School Open House
Friday, January 31st:  Staff Meeting in Miss Howey's classroom (8am)
Friday, January 31st:  4th graders are singing the National Anthem at our home Basketball game!
Friday, January 31st:  Last Day of Music until after Spring Break...gonna miss you Mrs. Fitz!


Articles Worth Reading:

New Family Tours: What do they expect? +Jimmy Casas @casas_jimmy

Immortality of Stories +Angela Maiers @AngelaMaiers

27 Ways to Respond When Students Don't Pay Attention +Terry Heick @TeachThought

44 sunsets @Jonharper70bd

Why Do We Need To Learn This? @edutopia by Dr. Allen Mendler

The Oasis Within: Mindfulness practice for teachers @edutopia by Lisa Flook

7 Signs You Are Hanging With the Wrong Crowd +Marc Chernoff @marcandangel

She's Stealing My Thunder +Daisy Dyer Duerr @DaisyDyerDuerr

Snow Day +Tony Sinanis @TonySinanis

Improvement is the goal +Shannon Degan @shannondegan

The Thinking Wall +Josh Stumpenhorst @stumpteacher

Digital Citizenship: Not Just For Kids @PetticrewC

TMI - The Glove @ShutUpRun


Videos Worth Watching:


Educational Tour Bus...what a creative idea! (8 min)




Digital Youth Portfolios...I like this idea. (9 min)




Michelle Obama photobombs the Miami Heat! (1 min)





Finding My Voice: Inspiring Youth TedX Talk (12 min)



Sunday, January 19, 2014

Seek first to understand...

Last Monday night I got home from the 4th and 5th grade Spelling Bee and went in to read to my boys. We were on the verge of finishing Wonder by @RJPalacio.  Usually I read a chapter, and tell them good night. But on this particular night it was 9:30 before I realized it. We were having great conversation about the end of the book.  I was glad I chose to read the book to my boys. I knew going in that my oldest could read it on his own and that my youngest was likely to hear the story in 4th or 5th grade, but I wanted to read it with them.  I'm glad I did because it gave us a chance to stop and reflect on situations that arose in the story.  For example, towards the end, Mr. Tushman, the Principal at Beecher Prep, is giving his graduation speech and he gets to the point that I absolutely love.  He reads from a book that talks about making one new rule for the entire world.  The new rule would be that, "We are all kinder than necessary."


Now think about this- really think- "kinder than necessary".  How great would our world be if we were all kinder than necessary?  I talked with my boys about how we could be kinder than necessary.  I gave simple and complex examples.  But in the end it comes down to understanding other people's stories. We must seek first to understand...

This made me reflect back to when I was in middle school.  The story begins on the bus.  (Sidenote - not a lot of good things ever happened on the bus...just sayin'.)  Almost all bus rides felt the same.  I remember the cool, brisk mornings waiting at the end of the driveway with my younger brother.  We would take tiny little pebbles and try to bounce them between the yellow lines in the road.  Memories.  I also remember that I was a creature of habit on the bus.  I tried to always sit by the heater... I liked to feel the warmth.  Most bus rides were spent either reading my sporting news magazine, staring out the window or chatting with someone about sports.  I didn't like the bus, but I didn't despise it either.  Each day the route was the same.  We'd get picked up, we'd ride around the lakes and then turn down Maitland & Skyline Drive.  These two roads were littered with houses on both sides.  As we turned past Skyline and onto Maitland, we always came to a nice, two story home that looked kinda tan and white.  The house had a fence and the two boys would always get on and sit towards the front.  I knew them, but they were both younger, and I just kept to myself.  Each day the older brother, who needed assistance with walking and moving, would sit by the window and he would repeat a phrase.  He would say, "81...9 times 9 is 81...81...9 times 9 is 81...81...9 times 9 is 81."  Tim repeated this for the majority of the bus ride.  You can only imagine how that went over!  Tim was mocked and teased, and you name it, he heard it.  Quite frankly I found his repetition to be a bit humorous. Sure the repeated saying would get annoying, but I really thought it was funny.  Tim's brother, Dale, almost always sat near him or with him.  I could tell he was angry.  He defended his brother and seemed to carry a chip on his shoulder.  He would confront kids and yell.  I rarely interacted with him. I just minded my own business.

This pattern went on for years.  Then on an unseasonably warm day in March I met some friends for pick-up basketball and to watch March Madness games on television.  We hung out for hours, we laughed, we ate tons of food and we just played basketball.  Then we went down to the basement and watched a game.  During one of the timeouts, my friend Derek began making fun of Tim.  Keep in mind, Tim wasn't there.  He was mocking him and trying to be funny.  At first we all chuckled, and then Derek's mom walked in.  She got just a glimpse of what was occurring and she said, "Are you making fun of Tim?"  Derek didn't respond, but then his mother sat down and explained Tim's issues. She explained to us what mental retardation was (Nowadays we hardly ever use that term, we usually say developmental delay).  Derek's mom explained how he was born with this and some of the challenges he faces now and will face for the rest of his life.  As I listened and learned Tim's story, I began to feel like a jerk.  I thought of the many times that I did nothing.  I thought about Tim's brother and how his brother tried so hard to stick up for him.

From that point on we were much kinder to Tim.  We said, "hi" to him and when people would begin to tease we would often say, "that's not cool".  Years passed.  We got to high school and the bus was no longer something we rode.  Every once in a while I would see Tim and I would say "hi".


Then several years later I became a 5th grade teacher.  During my third year one of my teaching partners got a student-teacher.  I kid you not, it was Tim's brother, Dale.  I enjoyed helping him with lessons and asking him how his brother was doing.  His demeanor was nothing like I remembered. He was confident, positive, polite and humble.  I'm glad I had the opportunity to work with him and to reconnect.  I'm pleased that he found a teaching position and is enjoying a successful and fulfilling career.

Everything changed for me when I began to understand Tim.  So often society judges, stereotypes and looks down on people that are deemed different.  When you take the time to understand, you typically empathize and feel for person.  I wish we had one rule for the entire world. I wish we would be "kinder than necessary". I wish we would take the time to understand before we pass judgement.  Think about yourself, have you invested the time, energy and effort to understand each one of your students?  I can honestly say that I learn every day. Just last week I went on two home visits...my eyes were opened very wide.  I needed the reminder to "seek first to understand..."

This week's big question:  How will you educate your students or your children to - seek first to understand?

NEXT WEEK AT A GLANCE:

Monday, January 20th:  Professional Development 8-3pm at Warner Elementary.
Tuesday, January 21st:  Hearing & Vision testing begins
Wednesday, January 22nd:  K-2 assembly 8:45
Wednesday, January 22nd:  TAT at 2:55
Thursday, January 23rd:  Hearing & Vision testing concludes
Thursday, January 23rd:  Lockdown drill in the AM
Friday, January 24th:  Half-Day for students, End of 1st Semester

* January is National Mentoring Month, if you see a mentor thank them for all of their dedication and commitment.  Our Kids Hope Mentors are true difference makers.

Articles Worth Reading:

Feedback: It Ain't Bad by +Tony Sinanis @TonySinanis

Promote Questioning in Your Classroom +Charity Preston @theOCBlog

7 creative Apps to allow students to show what they know +Terry Heick @TeachThought

Striking a Balance: Digital Tools & Distraction in schools by @mbteach @edutopia

Leadership lessons from "Let it Go"; not just a Disney song +Amber Teamann @8Amber8

How every family should celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day @teachmama

10 +1 lessons I learned the hard way by +Pernille Ripp @pernilleripp

Who's Your +1 +Kristen Swanson @kristenswanson

The Best List of Twitter Lists Ever +Tom Whitford @twhitford

Titles that have legs +Donalyn Miller #nerdybookclub @donalynbooks & @katsok

Teach Kids to use the 4-letter word shared by @edutopia

9 confessions for today... @ShutUpRun

10 Things Happy FAMILIES do differently +Marc Chernoff @marcandangel


Videos Worth Watching:


Inspiring and Touching! (5 min)





#Longshot (This is an amazing story about the journey of understanding.) (11 min)



Western was featured on the WILX segment of #SchoolsRule Check out the "Roller Coaster". (1 min)





MinecraftEDU using Minecraft in the classroom. (designed for Teachers and Students) (10 min)








Friday, January 10, 2014

The Path of Change


This week as the temperatures approached -25 I sat on my cozy couch and read my Runner's World magazine.  I would define myself as a diehard runner, but even I have been reduced to the treadmill in this extreme cold.  The article that peeked my interest was the Newbie Chronicles by Marc Parent. In this article titled, "Change for Good", Marc says, "January is a month filled with ghosts of failures past. January is for dreamers.  February is for doers." 

As I finished reading this article I wondered.  I wondered why people give up.  I wondered why change is so difficult for some.  I wondered why people make excuses.

Then my thoughts shifted to the people that change, but not necessarily for the better.  When you change for the worse others notice it, but the person changing typically doesn't.

Years ago I had a great friend.  We talked often, we spent time together at the holidays and we constantly encouraged each other.  I'll never forget all those morning chats.  It was an uplifting way to start the day.  We would talk sports, kids, religion...nothing was out-of-bounds.  Our friendship was one of mutual appreciation and admiration.

Then the move occurred.

For the first 6-8 months we stayed in contact and things seemed to be similar.  When we were both back in town we made a point to get together and it just seemed like old times.  But the longer we were apart the farther we drifted as friends.  Then last year we made a point to get together.  We took the kids to an ice rink and we skated and chatted for a couple hours.  In that time I saw glimpses of my old friend, but I also saw a changed person.  He was talking about being "wronged" and "falling-outs" that happened.  He was clearly playing the victim.  He wasn't taking responsibility.  Everything was a deflection and an excuse.  His attitude had turned very selfish.

This really saddened me.  I always viewed him as the utmost positive person.  I knew that someday he would be leading Youth Clinics and speaking to area youth children about a healthy lifestyle.  This was inevitable...but something changed.

As our conversation continued I listened and I tried to interject, but I didn't feel as comfortable as I once did around him.  I felt a distance that I didn't truly understand.  Right in front of me I was witnessing a change...a change for the worse.  But I don't think he saw it or felt it.

We've all heard the excuses, oh you know...not enough time, lack of resources, no support and even the one that makes my spine shiver...I've been doing it this way for as long as I can remember, isn't this good enough?  These are the typical barriers to growth and positive change. But my friend confronted me with a new one.  He was the victim.  If you've ever talked with someone that plays the victim you fully understand the challenges this presents.  I attempted to be ruthful, but I knew I didn't completely understand his circumstance.  In the end we hugged and we told each other that we had to do this more often, but sadly we haven't.  I write this because I think I could have done more...I think I still can do more.  Marc Parent's article talked about a change for good.  Maybe the way I need to look at it is, "It is never too late to make a positive change in someone's life."

Marc is correct, January is for dreamers.  I dream that we can all look inside ourselves and see the truth. What is it that is holding us back?  How can I grow?  How can I be a positive influence to those around me?  Most people enter a new year with dreams of weight loss, to quit smoking, to become better organized.  All of those things are good, I look at the new year and I dream of Changing for Good.

I'm going to pick up the phone and try my best to reconnect with my old friend.  I'm going to listen, support and then I'm going to be honest.  That's what friends do.  Friends listen, support and have the integrity to be honest.

This Week's Big Question: Are you a dreamer or a doer?

Next Week At A Glance:

Sunday, January 12th:  Happy Bday to Julie Oliver
Monday, January 13th:  1:1 Tech Leadership meeting at 1pm
Monday, January 13th:  6pm Spelling Bee at CAC
Tuesday, January 14th:  Panther Pride Luncheon
Tuesday, January 14th:  PTO Meeting 7pm
Wednesday, January 15th:  Assembly at 8:45
Wednesday, January 15th:  2:55 TAT for invited teachers
Thursday, January 16th: 1:15 Crisis Response Meeting
Thursday, January 16th:  AM Lockdown drill
Friday, January 17th: Staff Meeting 8am in Mrs. Struck's classroom


Articles Worth Reading:

It's not enough to be a connected educator anymore +Pernille Ripp @pernilleripp

When we let our students plan our lessons +Pernille Ripp @pernilleripp

10 +1 steps for meaningful student blogging +Pernille Ripp @pernilleripp

Today I met a new friend. Thanks Google Glass! +Drew Minock @TechMinock

The handwritten note...going old school in 2014 +Amber Teamann @8Amber8

Does Boredom Always Have To Be A Bad Thing? +Justin Tarte @justintarte

Check Yourself! +Tom Whitford @twhitford

5 Great Math Resources For The New Year +Erin Klein @KleinErin

I would love to teach but...  shared by Sara Delor (Many reasons point to this "Change")

The Joy of Teaching: You Never Run Out of Kids +Vicki Davis @coolcatteacher

10 Ways To Encourage Student Participation +Charity Preston @theOCBlog

Not About The Gadgets - Why EVERY teacher should have to integrate Tech into their classroom +Pernille Ripp @pernilleripp

15 Miles never felt so... by @ShutUpRun

10 Gifts You Deserve To Give Yourself +Marc Chernoff @marcandangel


Videos Worth Watching:

Inspiring Ad for the upcoming Olympics (2 min)




Snow Day Video Story Problem by @dreambition  (1 min)




Little Kids. Big Questions. Honesty (6 min)




Friday, January 3, 2014

Every 4 years...

One of the most powerful learning tools is "doing".  As a classroom teacher years ago I had brainstormed an idea that I immediately got excited about.

Every 4 years the World is blessed with Summer and Winter Olympics.  As a kid I loved turning on NBC in the evenings and watching events that I had never seen.  It was a true opportunity to take pride in my country and root for the team, not simply an individual.  As a youngster I remember watching highlight after highlight of the USA Hockey Team defeating Russia. The broadcast still gives me chills.


I also remember the whole Nancy Kerrigan and Tonya Harding saga. And the one that I'll never forget is in 1994 at Lillehammer.  I was rooting so hard for Dan Jansen in the final race.  When he finally won gold I felt like my smile was reaching my ears.  


What I love about the Olympics is the stories.  If you take the time to watch the broadcast you'll hear story after story about Olympians.  As a kid I dreamed about being an Olympian, yet I never really had a signature event, but that's the beauty of being a kid...you simply dream!

Years later I became a teacher and I wanted the Olympics to have meaning to my students.  I devised a plan. Each student would learn about a country (not the U.S.), and each student would create a model or diagram of a venue or event. They would research the location and history of the upcoming games and finally cap it off with our very own Winter Olympics!  As I look back it was one of my all-time favorite units as a teacher.  It incorporated geography, narrative writing, geometry/measurement and reading.  We spent several afternoons doing Winter Olympic activities.  Students didn't call it math or science, they just learned by doing.  When the unit finally came to a cultivating conclusion we ventured outdoors.  We had events like speed sledding, snowboarding, snow yo-yo, snow ball throw and snow boot kick.

Looking back, one of my most memorable conversations was a true learning experience. One of my students came in with absolute excitement.  Cassidy ran up to me and said, "Mr. Gilpin, did you see the snowboarder fall near the finish?"  I replied, "Yes. What did you think?"  Cassidy stated, "She should have never tried showing-off, that's what happens when you aren't humble."  All I could do is nod. She was referring to the Lindsey Jacobellis moment.  (Feel free to check it out on Youtube.)  That year I look back with pride.  My students gained knowledge of a bigger picture.  They learned by doing and they enjoyed the process.  My goal was to light a spark in many of them that I had found so many years before.  This year the Winter Olympics are in Sochi and they begin on February 7th.  Sometimes winter can feel repetitive, we can easily get stuck in a rut.  Our students crave to learn by doing.

This week's big question:  What will you do to light their fire?


NEXT WEEK AT A GLANCE:

Monday, January 6th:  Welcome Back!
Tuesday, January 7th:  New Refrigerator being delivered at 4pm
Wednesday, January 8th:  Grades 3-5 assembly with Coach Cottingham & SAU players
Wednesday, January 8th:  TAT at 2:55 teachers will be emailed invitations by end of the day Monday
Thursday, January 9th:  AM Lockdown drill

*  I'd like to have a grade level per week focus on Educational Apps.  We've done this before, but without regularity.  We would begin this week with 5th grade and work our way down.  Please discuss this with your grade level partner, and if you are willing to participate, please inform Deb in the library.


Articles Worth Reading:

Lessons From The Spartans by +Sue Haney @susankhaney

The refrigerator light by @Jonharper70bd

Where Twitter has taken me (literally)... @DrJoeClark

Youth Citizen of the Year: Michael Funkhouser shared +Brad Wilson @dreambition & @Gibbychip

My 3 Words... by @jcordery

Why Every Educator Needs a Visit From a Penguin by +Mr. Abud @MR_ABUD

Let's make formative assessing a top priority by +Justin Tarte @justintarte

Is it time to stop doing Common Assessments? by +Justin Tarte @justintarte

How much freedom should a teacher have? @grantwiggins @TeachThought

What I'm Reading Now by @ShutUpRun

12 Rules for Being Beautifully Human by +Marc Chernoff @marcandangel


Videos Worth Watching:


Everyday things that effect your mood. (2 min) shared by @smaj40




Amazing 4th down stand by the Spartans! (1 min)




Change History! Love this Ted Talk. (8 min)





What Brought Us Together...2013 (6 min)