Thursday, November 19, 2015


"Hard work without talent is a shame, but talent without hard work is a tragedy."
Robert Half, businessman
I saw the quote above on Friday evening when I stopped into my office in between dodgeball and karaoke (supervising, not participating) during our 6th grade Youth Night.  It made me think of the talents that each of us have and in particular, the talents that we see in others that they don't see in themselves.  I have seen some of you do things that are incredibly difficult only to discount them when someone points out the greatness of the activity.  It reminds me of the line in "Teach Like a Pirate" by Dave Burgess that really bothers him.  One of his colleagues said, "It's easy for you.  You're creative."  As Dave goes on to say, nothing is easy.  It takes a lot of work to be creative, and everyone is creative.  Keep working on your talents, those sometime hidden gems that make you who you are.  It's hard work to be as good as you are every day for our kids, and I know that.  As I say on Twitter from time to time, keep on keeping on.  It's awesome to see you bring your best for your kids every day.  Remember, they give us their best every day, too.

Monday, November 23rd                Meeting 1-4PM
Tuesday, November 24th                Staff meeting 8:15 (Staff recognition awards)
Monday, November 30th                Board meeting (Student Showcase- Veterans Day)
***Friday, December 4th is a half day with an AM schedule!

Crisis team
I am looking for 3 people to serve on a medical crisis team.  This team would receive training on medical emergencies and be our "first responders".  Please let me know by our December 3rd grade level meetings.

Tweets, blogs, and quotes
**You can't miss this- A teacher compliments his students every day (from Huffington Post)
"What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything?"- Vincent van Gogh, artist
"There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self."- Ernest Hemingway, writer
"When you see a good person, think of becoming like him.  When you see someone not so good, reflect on your own weak points."- Confucius, teacher and philosopher
"All life is an experiment.  The more experiments you make, the better."- Ralph Waldo Emerson, writer
"You cannot swim for new horizons until you have courage to lose sight of the shore."- William Faulkner, writer
How to teach the "on demand" generation (from @ajjuliani)
"The great secret of power is never to will to do more than you can accomplish."- Henrik Ibsen, playwright
"Hard work spotlights the character of people: Some turn up their sleeves, some turn up their noses, and some don't turn up at all."- Sam Ewing, baseball player
"Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear--not absence of fear."- Mark Twain, writer
If a child doesn't know how to behave we... (from @EricEwald_Iowa)
@mertonint on Twitter
#mertonint on Twitter
Merton Intermediate School Facebook page
Family smore for 11.20.15

Don't forget our Thanksgiving Email Challenge
Pick at least one person on the staff (maybe more than one if you have time) and send them an email shairng something you value in them and thanking them for their work.  It doesn't have to be a long email- just specific, kind, and thoughtful.  I think if we are all able to send at least one of these emails between now and next Tuesday, we will start the Thanksgiving holiday off on the right foot!

Here's a challenge for you...
Pick one of the following "posters" and reflect upon it for our staff blog.  If you aren't already a contributor on our staff blog, please consider it.  There is still the opportunity to share your classroom, grade level, or content area excitement on our staff blog using this form, too.  Give it a try!
            (from             (from my wife, @JPo1992. She gets it!)

               (Jen sent me this one, too!)                             (from Pinterest)
                    (from Pixteller)                                      (from @gcouros)

Thanks for another great week.  Enjoy the weekend.
Take care of our kids.  Take care of each other.  Take care of yourself.