Friday, July 24, 2015

The final days of July

In a few short days, July will be over and my thoughts will truly return to school and the preparations for all of our students and staff for the upcoming school year.  To be honest, I have been thinking about the 2015-2016 school year since before you and the students all left.  I am thinking about our incoming 5th graders and wanting to make sure that their first experience in the Intermediate School is a good one.  I am thinking about our incoming 6th graders and their transition to "living" out of a locker.  I am thinking about our incoming 7th graders and their move upstairs.  And I am thinking about our incoming 8th graders and how we can all help them become positive leaders in our school.  I am excited for the challenges of the upcoming year and believe that our attitude toward our students, and each other, will have a profound impact on our success this year.  Start thinking positively about the students we will learn with this year, realize they have grown over the three months of summer, and do your best to give them a fresh slate.  They will appreciate it and I'm sure that they will surprise you.

Running streak interview
A couple of weeks ago, Doug Russell from 620WTMJ radio stopped in to interview me about my running streak.  If you are interested, here is a link to the interview that aired on Monday.

Tweets, quotes, and blogs
Twitter resources (from @Dwight_Carter)
Look Up- disconnect (A video about making sure to disconnect once in a while from @Dwight_Carter)
"If you think adventure is dangerous, try routine -- it is lethal."- Paulo Coelho, novelist
"If you set your goals ridiculously high and it's a failure, you will fail above everyone else's success."- James Cameron, filmmaker
"Desire is the key to motivation, but it's determination and commitment to an unrelenting pursuit of your goal -- a commitment to excellence -- that will enable you to attain the success you seek."- Mario Andretti, race car driver
"Be less curious about people and more curious about ideas."- Marie Curie, physicist and chemist
"Success depends upon previous preparation, and without such preparation there is sure to be failure."- Confucius, philosopher and teacher
7 benefits of digital student portfolios (from Tabitha Tatum, part of a book discussion on Digital Student Portfolios)
"An imitation may be quite successful in its own way, but imitation can never be Success.  Success is a first-hand creation."- Henry Ford, industrialist
"If you want to achieve excellence, you can get there today.  As of this second, quit doing less-than-excellent work."- Thomas Watson, corporate leader
7 Lessons for Teachers from Dumbledore (from Edutopia)
"However difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at."- Stephen Hawking, theoretical physicist
Tweets from #mertonint
Tweets from @mertonint

                                          (Created by Angela Gordon)             (found on
I wonder if you noticed the similarity of these two "posters"?  They make me think about what's important in my life every day.  I am in the midst of trying to find balance in my life, a never ending struggle for all of us.  Like everyone, I need time for my family, time for my friends, time for school, and time for me.  I have a goal to be unplugged for some part of every day.  Some days I do well and some days I don't do so well.  I think the day and the time of day has a big impact on the balance.  As July comes to an end, I need to continue to take chances to become a better husband, father, friend, and colleague.  That may sound a bit weird, but maintaining the status quo day after day does nothing to make us better.  We need to take a chance or two as the first poster mentions.  But I have to also keep the moment in mind.  Do I tell Jen and Lauren, "Just let me finish this one thing."  If I do, the moment is gone, never to return, and who knows how great that moment could have been if I was just there with them?  So as July days and nights come to an end, I encourage you all to live in the moment with your family.  School will start up again before you know it and then our time becomes more regimented.  Take the time with our remaining days of summer to disconnect when you can and reconnect whenever possible.  See you all soon!