This past week the members of the UCS learning community came together to share their appreciation for staff, friends and each other. They shared in song and in expression…something that’s pretty important to do in a successful learning community.
This is one of my all-time favorite events each year. It’s our fourth-grade track meet. We have six elementary schools who geographically are pretty spread out. Getting everyone together in one place is kind of a big deal!
Several years ago the track meet took place for only one of our schools. During the event, they would bring out this old record board and you could see that at one time all the schools participated. After some talking, some planning and some amazing support we were able to bring back the district-wide participation in this event and it has run that way for the last three years.
I can’t do it justice in words, but there’s an importance to getting everyone together in one place. There’s a distinct value or benefit beyond the five hours that we are there together.
This was a very fast-paced four day week for me. Each day I had a full day event or meeting. Started with two days of unicorns and then moved into a track meet and a 401 mile road trip. Not bad for four days!
From Mike: The Quizizz editor makes it super-easy to create great quizzes in no time. Different than Kahoot in that it is player paced. There is a Chrome App for Quizizz too. (added perks – avatars, single sign-on, students see question and possible answers at the same time on their device, name’s hard to say)
From Renee: Google’s My Maps
Create, collaborate, and share custom maps. Integrates directly with Google Drive.
Shaun shared some green screen stuff…maybe
Smilie Memorial School staff have been on a journey this year, discovering and growing in empathy and student voice. Smilie is a special place, as is any school and learning community. It always amazes me how special it is to be able to have people share about their schools. They don’t always know how special they are…but when you are able to capture it, share it and show them in the mirror just how extraordinary they are…that’s pretty powerful.
One of the extreme perks of my job is that I get to travel throughout our schools and see great learning opportunities. I also get to see all the tough moments, stuff that people work hard to get through and in the end, there’s this great success or growth that happens. Both perks make me very happy.
Last week I was invited (with many other people) to visit a preschool performance at Richmond Elementary School. It was, of course, a great thing to be there for and I enjoyed every moment, but the part that really stuck with me was when the teacher was introducing the event. She said that the kids had been sharing their love of stories and storytelling. There’s been a lot of social media traffic about the value of modeling and sharing the art of storytelling with students (some even showing that it’s one of the most powerful tools to building effective writers and readers, especially versus more traditional models of grammar instruction, etc.). This particular gift that was evident during this performance really stuck in my head and seems to be a concept that I’ll obsess about in the future months.