"There are no two ways about it - teaching is demanding. We're counting on our teachers to shape and transform our next generation, but we pay them salaries comparable to that of someone who works at a rental car counter. We expect them to deal with learning, family, motivational, and life issues for hundreds of students yet decide that they are not trustworthy that we need to hold their feet to the fire with nonsensical standardized tests. We blame them when things don't go exactly the way we want - with a given child, class, school, or national cohort - yet we do next to nothing to support them. Yet they persevere, and come to school every day committed to helping our kids become better people. So, to our teachers, we say thank you!!"
This statement came from the book, Most Likely to Succeed by Tony Wagner. Tony Wagner was the keynote speaker at the conference I attended last week. I know this is how some of you feel, but I believe in you and there are many others out there that support your work and understand how hard you are working.
Below is another statement from his book which talks about our current schooling system and issues that teachers and students are facing today.
"Today more than ever, we prize academic achievement, pressuring our children to get into the "right" colleges, have the highest GPAs, and pursue advanced degrees. But while students may graduate with credentials, by and large they lack the competencies needed to be thoughtful engaged citizens and to get good jobs in our rapidly evolving economy. Our school system was engineered more than a century ago to produce a workforce for a world that no longer exists. Alarmingly, our methods of schooling crush the creativity and initiative young people need to thrive today."
What are we doing at WHS to create a school culture that breeds creativity and innovation? We talk about building relationships, creating engaging lessons, challenging our students, but can we do more? When I say more, I don't mean more work, I mean thinking differently about the approach we take to teaching our students. The work has begun for so many of you. Lets keep it going!!
On Wednesday, we have a scheduled Learning and Collaboration Time. Please use that time to think about your teaching. Are you creating a learning environment where students' creativity is fostered and encouraged to go deeper? Think about this on Wednesday: What if for your next assessment you gave a blank Google Doc to all of your students and asked them to write/sketch/record/etc. what they have learned from the current topic/concept/standard you were teaching? No study guide, no review, no extra help. What would you get? Would you get great answers with examples, links to resources, all the steps to solve a problem, etc. Would that not demonstrate learning? If the students couldn't provide solid answers, would that not be a poor reflection on you as the teacher?The world no longer cares about what you know. The world cares what you can do w/ what you know. @DrTonyWagner #NJPSAConf2016— Kevin Carroll (@WHS_Principal) October 21, 2016
When we pursue excellence, we'll never get "there," because the "there" is always changing. #growthmindset #leadership #leadupchat pic.twitter.com/PDYpZijn1T— Brent Coley (@brentcoley) October 22, 2016
No Homework week of November 7
Factors on this decision ...
Three day work week
End of the marking is Wednesday 11/9
Gives students a chance to re-energize for Marking Period 2
Ask students to self-reflect on their effort during the first Marking Period
Get feedback from your students
No Homework should be due on Monday, November 14
Would love to have face to face conversations on these topics throughout the week with all of you. I want to hear your thoughts and ideas.
I have received a few parent emails regarding Google Classroom and their not receiving the email summaries. As I am troubleshooting the issue, please make sure you have the Guardian Email Summaries selected to be ON.
*In Classroom .... under the STUDENT Tab .... Guardian Email Summaries ... Include this Class ... ON position. (See image below)
If you don't have it on, please turn it on.
Tuesday - American Day
Wednesday - Twin Day
Thursday - Formal Day (Students) Staff (Casual Day)
Friday - Color Day & Spirit Rally 2:00 pm - Students will be called down from their Period 8 class. We will not move to Period 9.
Tuesday 10/25 Photo Retakes (12 - 2:30 pm Greenberg Center)
Wednesday 10/26 Learning and Collaboration Time
Thursday 10/27 Parent Workshop Naviance Training (8-8:45 am & 6:30-7:30 pm Little Th)
Friday 10/28 - Class Ring Ordering During Lunch (Sophomore Class)
Senior Class Picture "17" on the Hill at 1:45 pm
Monday 10/31 - Halloween
Around the building
Mr. Noschese has a student teacher with him this semester, David Fox. I asked David to introduce himself to the staff...
I’m a recent addition to Waldwick High School and have been thoroughly enjoying the experience thus far. I’m currently working alongside Mr. Noschese as a student teacher and will continue at this position for the extent of the fall semester. This is, most certainly, a learning experience. I’m accumulating a wealth of knowledge throughout my time here and storing it for future use in a potential classroom of my own.
However, for now I’m still in the process of receiving my teaching certificate from Felician University and will be finishing up by the end of this fall (2016). I’ve also earned a Bachelor's Degree in History from the University of Delaware. Ultimately, my educational foundation has been set by these two institutions, but my true understanding is growing each and every day.
This includes my time at Waldwick and truthfully, much of what I know about teaching today has been enriched exponentially from the time spent within here. Granted, one can only learn so much from a textbook and the process of performing the actual day to day duties supersedes anything we can encounter behind a desk. So, thank you for providing me with this opportunity to sharpen my craft through meaningful connections with your students and yourselves.