Monday, January 13, 2014

One word for 2014

Principal ponderings...

Recently, on Twitter I have been reading about people doing something a little different than the usual new year's resolution.  Many people have either watched this clip from the Today show ( ) or read Jon Gordon's blog or book, and they have taken his advice to simplify the resolution process.  Instead of deciding on a few resolutions that we tend to do for a little bit and then forget all together, Jon Gordon suggests that we decide on one word to focus on for 2014.

I was reading different blogs and articles written by people I follow on twitter, trying to decide what my one word would be for this year.  And then, a few days into the start of the new year, my word arrived in the mail.  I had generated several possible words in my head, but opening up a package with a tiny box in it from my mother made my decision much easier.  In the little box was a necklace with four letters on the chain: H-O-P-E.  That's it, my word for 2014 is hope.

Hope is a little word that contains so much potential.  Hope is a word that I will certainly be leaning on in my personal life this year, but it is also a word that I know will help me in my professional life as well.

  • I hope that we will continue to collaborate and come together as a school to provide the best learning opportunities for our students this year.  
  • I hope that our teachers will keep growing and learning from each other, opening their classroom doors to each other so that we can always be improving.  
  • I hope that our students will develop a love of reading after seeing their teachers share their love of reading.  
  • I hope that we will look back on this year and be proud of all of our hard work.  
  • I hope that I will motivate others to try new ideas.  
  • I hope that our school district will do some creative problem solving to get us out of the current budget crisis and come out stronger and wiser on the other end.

Yes, I think hope is the perfect word for me.  I am looking forward to 2014 and all it has to offer.  I am full of hope for our school and our students.  And I am going to make sure that 2014 is a year full of hope.

What will your one word for 2014 be?

Currently reading:
I have been reading Tango, The Tale of an Island Dog, another MCBA book.  I have had a little trouble getting into it.  But I'm not going to abandon it, just have to keep going.  I've also been reading a funny graphic novel that Mrs. Fulreader gave me called Hyperbole and a Half.  It's full of short little stories that make you laugh out loud.  I feel like I have been taking a break from professional books, so hopefully this week I will find a good new one or revisit one I have already started.

Events this week:
Wednesday - 4th grade chorus @2:25, Staff meeting @ 3:30 in the library
Thursday - PTA meeting @ 3:30 in the cafeteria
Friday - Para meeting @ 9:00, 4th grade chorus @ 2:25, Dr. Bent and SLT Team will be meeting at FloRo and visiting classrooms

Great things I noticed last week:

  • Mrs, Benkley's 2nd graders were listening to a nonfiction read aloud called One Tiny Turtle by Nicola Davies.  The students had previously heard another book by the same author, Surprising Sharks.  Mrs. Benkley has having the students notice the differences between the way the two books were set up.  Students were begging her to reread their favorite page in the shark book; they loved how the author used different fonts on the page.  And then when they began to listen to the poetic book about a tiny turtle and view the illustrations, I heard one student tell another student, "it's beautiful."
  • If you are looking for more ways to incorporate technology into your students' everyday activities, then stop into Mr. Crowley's classroom.  He has put an old laptop to good use...students use it to sign out for bathroom, water or nurse.  And he is able to keep track using a simple google form.
  • Mrs. Cahill was having an interesting discussion with some 4th graders in Mrs. Nissi's class about the emotions involved when we do something and we have to apologize for our actions.
  • In the lab classrooms, as well as some other classrooms, students have been diving into non fiction.  I'm looking forward to learning lots of new facts from our readers! 

Check it out:
Here are some great pointers that would be good to share with parents about the importance of reading aloud to kids.  I am going to share some of these on the website with our parents.
Here is a list of 20 of the best children's books from 2013.  How many have you read or do you have them in your classroom library?
And a great thought for all of us this week...

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