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Showing posts from March, 2015

Finding the Fun in Faliure

As educators in the modern age, we recognize the importance of failure. We know it feels bad, but we also know that it is an important step towards growth.

Winston Churchil was on to this idea when he stated "Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm." Sometimes, that is a really hard thing to do.

At times, I am really good at failure and even embrace it. When I play tennis (or basketball, pickle, street hockey, dodge ball, wiffle ball, video games, ghost in the graveyard - you get the idea?) with my kids, I typically fail. This never, ever bothers me and I consistently have a great time. The stakes are low and I can occasionally learn a new thing that makes my failure less extreme the next time around. I know that I will never be able to compete with either of them in any sport I try, and yet, I keep going back for more and find myself laughing in spite of my failure.

When I fail with them, I am part of an accepting team. They encourage me…

Bleary-Eyed, Happy & Riddled With Questions

My report cards are due tomorrow.  I just finished and it is 10:35 pm.  This isn't the latest hour at which I have finished, nor is it the earliest.

For better or for worse, my school relies heavily on a narrative to communicate progress.  I have mixed feelings about this.  On the one hand, I like being able to tell students and parents exactly what I see, rather than simply choosing from a menu of comments, as I've had to do in other schools.  Relating a specific moment or success is powerful.

On the other hand, I walked away from today's writing marathon worried that there was lots of room for bias.  Did I gush more about the one student than another?  Did I allow recent frustrations with a student over-shadow her growth?  Was there appropriate data to support what I wrote?

Don't get me wrong, I am pleased with the outcome of today's report card rally.  I read my comments over and over.  I looked at their scores and samples of student work.  A trusted colleague…