Starting Strong


In this newsletter, we examine the importance of starting strong for success all year long.

  1. “You won’t know unless you try.” A well-worn phrase from parents at the dinner table, and advice I had to heed from my kids when they asked me to try an elevated ropes course, described in this post. (FYI, I don’t like heights.)

  2. Students need both a challenge and support in reaching their goals to be truly engaged in learning. Phillip Schlechty developed a framework for designing for student engagement; check out his resources on his website.

  3. John Spencer created a helpful video tutorial that briefly describes Schlechty’s engagement framework. Useful for staff meetings and professional development.

  4. The first step toward success is being honest with ourselves and others about our current reality. A brief story about a parent signing in their child late provided some clarity for me.

  5. Why do some people stop learning? Robert Kegan and Lisa Laskow Lahey explain that we have an “immunity to change” in this classic article from Harvard Business Review.

  6. Collecting, curating, and communicating learning artifacts via digital portfolios can support students in facilitating personal growth and renewal. Check out my book on the topic.

  7. Trust is necessary for teaching, learning, and leading in schools. I discovered a key element for professional trust after some reflection in this post.

  8. Jon Saphier provides many specific strategies for leaders to build trust in their schools in this article for The Learning Professional.

  9. In this blog post, Dan Rockwell shares seven practices for bringing out the best in others.

  10. We know we are successful through feedback. So why wait for it? Instead, consider asking for feedback, a recommendation by Susan Fowler for Smart Brief.