This morning we had our staff kickoff for the new school year. It was a great time of reconnecting and getting everyone focused on our district goals, and the purpose we are in this great profession: making a difference in children's lives. As I sat in the kickoff assembly, and subsequent Professional Development collaboration meetings, I began to think about my goals for this year.
I started a mental checklist which included:1. Make sure each student I interact with each day knows they are valued2. Not lose sight of the student when looking at data3. Collaborate with colleagues in and out of my building4. Continue integrating technology into my teaching thought authentic tasks5. Get the student technology squad up and running, and encourage students to do their best to make our school great
By no means is this list exhaustive, and I will continue adding and amending goals over the next few days and throughout the year. I'm looking forward to another great year, and learning alongside my colleagues and students.
I'll end this post with the story each staff member was given on a bookmark with the question "What's My Mark?" On the other side. So as my superintendent posed this question to me, and encouraged me to reflect on my own teaching, I encourage you to do the same.
Star Fish StoryWhile walking along a beach, an elderly gentleman saw someone in the distance leaning down, picking something up and throwing it into the ocean.As he got closer, he noticed that the figure was that of a young man, picking up starfish one by one and tossing each one gently back into the water.
He came closer still and called out, “Good morning! May I ask what it is that you are doing?”
The young man paused, looked up, and replied “Throwing starfish into the ocean.”
The old man smiled, and said, “I must ask, then, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?”
To this, the young man replied, “The sun is up and the tide is going out. If I don’t throw them in, they’ll die.”
Upon hearing this, the elderly observer commented, “But, young man, do you not realise that there are miles and miles of beach and there are starfish all along every mile? You can’t possibly make a difference!”
The young man listened politely. Then he bent down, picked up another starfish, threw it into the back into the ocean past the breaking waves and said, “IT MADE A DIFFERENCE FOR THAT ONE."
WE ARE MAKING A DIFFERENCE.