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Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Busy Days: Changing And/Or Deepening Focus

In some ways, priorities change regularly in the school house. Students' needs are a mix of predictable and unpredictable, and that's what creates this changing landscape.

The new year found the expectations around me to be greater and less focused. Hence a need for focus and prioritization. I had to think deeply about my learners. What do they need and how can my colleagues and I meet those needs.

Math Education
This is my main priority and I rerouted the road here to offer greater support, enrichment, and targeted teaching and learning for the days ahead. I shared the schedule with colleagues and now it's time to focus on the details.

Frederick Douglass: Historical Mentor
There's a fair amount of prep work and teaching to do in this regard. I'll attend to that in the days ahead.

Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Study Group
I've got a lot of writing and rewriting to do in this area--it's good work that will support my teaching and students' learning well. I'll dig into this over the weekend.

MTA Summer Conference
My work on the MTA Professional Learning committee finds me thinking ahead to the summer conference and the many ideas related to this unique, union-focused teaching/learning event. I'm very proud to be a Massachusetts teacher and the summer conference is a time to celebrate and elevate the work we do together in a more relaxed atmosphere at the University of Massachusetts during summer days at the end of July and start of August. If you're an MTA member you should consider joining us for this event as it's a terrific time to empower your teaching, learning, and leading for the year to come.

DESE Teacher Advisory Council
There's lots of homework to do to prepare for our upcoming meeting--a meeting where we'll discuss many efforts related to the new ESSA law as well as professional licensure.

Scheduling for 2017-2018
Our team is thinking about possible ways to reschedule for 2017-2018. We have a great schedule this year, but have found ways to grow that schedule to be even better. These ideas demand greater conversation and thinking before any proposals are made.

WPSF Grants
Our team received funding from a local grant source, and now we're in the works of following through with the grants we received--two exciting grants that will enrich our ability to present a culturally proficient program to students.

Organization, Protocols, and Details
I'm waiting for that high-energy day to come when I'll update the classroom once again to reflect our new teaching and learning.

Science and STEAM
We have a number of science and STEAM projects to come--projects that we'll plan for and talk about at upcoming grade-level meetings.

Family, Friends, and Fun
It's easy to lose focus of the personal side of life when you teach, but we know that "all work and no play," makes teachers dull so we can't lose sight of that.

Onward.