Friday, April 5, 2013

April 8th, 2013

MAP testing weeks are always interesting from my point of view.  It's different and difficult work in some instances, and I have seen and heard of some great examples of how it has brought out the best in students and the adults in the building.  Thank you for your attention to this annual task.  One more week, and we'll be finished!

I think there have been sufficient updates regarding the upcoming week, so I am going to take this opportunity to share something that's been developing in my office.

"You're on the wall!"
Beginning on 3/26/13
I've been collecting successes, gripes, struggles, and new ideas on the wall of my office using a grid.  It started when I wondered aloud to myself about meeting times (How might we use department chair/faculty meeting time differently or better?).  I wrote it on the post-it note and stuck it on the wall so I wouldn't forget it over spring break.  Beginning on March 26th, I've added others based on conversations I've had with people as they have visited my office.  As of today, 22 different voices are represented on this grid.
As of 4/5/13

I shared the grid with department chairs on Monday, and today I am sharing it with you.  If you are interested in contributing, stop by sometime; I'll give you a "tour".  You can also add to the wall.  I am going to sue these ideas to help plan for next year.  When you visit, you'll see there are several good conversations we may have as a result. The pictures show you how ideas have been added to the grid and how people have built on ideas already on the grid during our first two weeks back from spring break.

You can send your thoughts via e-mail or stop by.  I can explain my next steps and how I am going to use of this information then.  The four quadrants are:

  • What is going well? How might we build on this? How might we make it better?
  • Where are we struggling? Why might we be struggling? What might we be doing better?
  • What are your gripes? How are you feeling? OR What is your hunch about what students are feelings? What might students be complaining about?
  • What are possibilities we haven't considered? What might we build on?
Most of the items are very candid, about me, about our work, about what we might do better.  I value this candor and look forward to everyone's contribution.  I will not take the grid down until the end of May.

Hixson T-Shirts
Several parents have asked if I would sell this year's faculty/staff t-shirt.  I have arranged to do this with STL-Style, the company that designed and printed them, and PayPal.  Please find a way to include the link to the order information (click here) in your next e-communication home (or use the link to buy another or a replace a lost one for yourself).

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