This question as a principal, Am I sure the students are all learning? Use to keep me up at night.
However, then I learned that the best way to ensure students are learning is through daily classroom walkthroughs.
These walkthrough must be intentional and focused on making sure that students are not just learning but mastering the curriculum taught.
That the atmosphere is affirming.
That the students are engaged in the process.
That the teacher is aware of everything that is happening between the four walls of the classroom.
While you are walking through each classroom, the validity of the information you receive through assessments and benchmarks will be affirmed.
The first step in effective leadership is making a choice that is in harmony with our goals and desires.
I personally believe that the academic growth your students make, and the development of the teachers that lead them, will directly correlate to the effectiveness and the...
Just because the goal to raise student achievement is clear in your head, does not mean it’s clear to your team.
Here are three questions your instructional leadership team and teachers must know the answer to.
Download a copy of my book and read chapter two, Quality of Student Work for more resources
This quote by Education Leadership expert Michael Schmoker from the September Education Leadership (ASCD) caught my eye and I needed to share with you, Poor instructional practices amount to "hundreds of hours of wasted class time" every year in the great majority of schools.
Schmoker points out three key competencies teachers must master in order to ensure school performance is moving in a positive direction for all students:
1. Clear, Coherent, Curriculum: I recall one time asking a leadership team what was the school's curriculum. Of the five leaders in the room, I received four different answers. "If you all are not clear, how would the 30 teachers in charge of disseminating know?" The first question know that I ask school leaders when we conduct a walkthrough is, "How will we know what will students be learning today?" On a scale of 1-10, how well can you answer this question?
2. Sound Instruction: Schmoker shares that every...
Do you remember what it felt like when a teacher really "got” you? What I mean by that is do you remember a teacher who knew your strengths and your weaknesses and encouraged you to aim higher in both?
I sure do. My 3rd grade teacher, Mrs. Bragg, was one. My 11th grade English teacher, Mrs. Vandevelder, was one, and my graduate school professor, Chris Thaiss, was one. They “got” me, and the "me" that they “got” was someone they liked. I liked that version of me too, and because of the way they saw me and responded to me, I thrived in their classrooms.
In grade school, I always pictured one of my teachers who didn’t “get” me talking to one of my teachers who did “get” me. As a kid, I believed that everyone I knew had nothing better to do than to talk about me. Perhaps that is a common thought among children.
Back to my picture. I’d picture my math teacher talking to Mrs. Bragg, and this is how the...