June 24, 2010

Perspectives, Discussions, and 21st Century Thinking (All in one)

Just thinking out loud so I can get my mind elsewhere ... 

School is what it's all about. This Flickr(tm) photo from AR Nature Gal.

If you focus on curriculum
  • you would want alignment with standards, now national
  • you would allow for, and create, participation in a real school improvement planning process
  • you would expect and demand rigor – teachers must focus on student learning
You must focus on STUDENT LEARNING above ALL ELSE.

If you focus on technology
  • you would focus on the future
  • you would discuss and pilot iPads
  • you would consider if there are real uses in the classroom or school for cell phones
  • you would expect to see teachers incorporate technology in their lessons, units, and assessments
  • you would want teachers to DEMAND additional technology for students' sakes 
You must stress that 21st Century skills are OLD FASHIONED SKILLS, not computer–oriented and focused.

If you focus on consistency
  • you would consider what is happening with the Responsible Thinking Center (RTC), Extended Learning Opportunities (ELO), and what you are doing about attendance concerns
  • you would provide volunteers and aides with appropriate training
  • you would create and implement job descriptions for employees
You must do what you say you're going to do. 

If you focus on fine arts
  • you would consider whether you are offering the appropriate courses
  • you would determine if the instructors have a plan for their programs (** maybe you would do that with all academic areas **)
  • you would listen to what the customer, e.g. the kids, are telling you
You must allow the program(s) to grow and support themselves. 

If you focus on communication
  • you would ensure that the Bear Facts gets distributed and consider what people expect in each issue
  • you would ensure that people are trained in AlertNow
  • you would listen when people tell you to send home certain information
  • schedule meetings that fit the community's timelines
  • you would over communicate — because that's a complaint we can handle
You must remember to TELL THEM ABOUT IT. Because if you don't tell someone, someone else is going to make up a story. 

If you focus on school image
  • you make sure that all of the above happens, plus
  • you would provide opportunities for people to get into the school
  • you would focus on PRIDE and make that part of everyone's HEART
  • you would talk to the paper and inform the writers of upcoming events
  • you would talk the talk ... and walk the walk ... 
You must remember that we all need a BOLD shift in THINKING about what we do. 

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