Taking Pride in Your Work

    When you really listen it's amazing what you can hear. Yesterday I was at the grocery store getting a few items when I overheard a conversation in the produce section between an older grocery store stocker and a younger stocker in training. It was the message that the elder delivered to his trainee that really lifted my spirits and had reflecting on life in a school. As he demonstrated how to arrange the apples he turned to his younger friend and said "Yesterday I arranged the Granny Smith's so perfectly that I stood back and didn't want anyone to touch my creation. That's how you should feel after everything you do here. Take pride in what you do!" Wow, what great advice. As I finished my shopping I kept thinking back to the advice the elder stocker gave to his protege and how it could apply to life in...
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My One Word for 2016

    For the past week I have been reading with interest a number of posts from member of my PLN with their One Word for 2016. To be honest I hadn't heard of the concept until I attended a session at the Learning Forward Conference in Washington in December. After learning about how an administrative team used the process with their staff to develop One Word for their school I thought this would be great for me, so I purchased the book and began my journey. If you haven't read One Word I can assure you that you can finish reading the book in about 45 minutes. The book leads you through a simple 3 step process to find your One Word - Prepare Your Heart, Discover Your Word, Live Your Word. Following the guidance of the authors I found the process be very reflective, and deeply personal. It led me...
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The Ontario College of Teachers - Inspiring Public Confidence

    Did you know the Ontario College of Teachers licenses, governs and regulates the Ontario teaching profession in the public interest? The College is responsible for approving teacher education programs, and setting high professional and ethical standards. So what does this mean exactly? The Ethical Standards and the Standards of Practice describe what it means to be a teacher – or indeed a teaching professional. Every teacher working in a publicly funded school is certified to teach and in good standing with the College. Not only do Ontario Certified Teachers (OCTs) have the knowledge and skills needed to help children learn and succeed, they’re also guided by a set of professional and ethical standards. These standards are something we put into practice in our classrooms every single day. They serve to remind us of our commitment to student learning and well-being. They encourage us to strive for greatness and reflect...
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A Month of Blogging

  "My blogging life is basically goalless. I like the zen nature of that, and paradoxically, it improves results." ~ Seth Godin   Well it's over. My month long challenge of blogging every day has finally come to an end. Looking back on the 29 blog posts it has been a real learning experience. There were days that I struggled to come up with a topic but suddenly an idea found me. It may have been that I was more present than normal through the month so I was open to seeing clearly what was in front of me or it may have been that I just pushed myself to get my thoughts and ideas into a post. Either way it has been a wonderful experience.  Over the month of June my posts generated over 10,000 hits, 33 comments and 100's of shares on Twitter, Google+, Pinterest and LinkedIn. But the...
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What it Must Feel Like

  "A good teacher is like a candle — it consumes itself to light the way for others." ~ unknown author   On Friday I made my way out to the front of our school to change our sign for the summer. As I opened the case an older neighbour was walking by and said to me "I bet those two are leaving for the summer happy people!" At first I was a bit confused but then I looked at the letters I was about to remove and I realized what she meant. The week before we put a message on our sign congratulating 2 of our teachers on their retirement. Both teachers had an amazing career, positively impacting students. But then I began to think about what the neighbour said. I wonder what it must really feel like to retire?  I can only imagine the emotions that a retiring teacher...
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