The Wounded Leader

Recently I recalled a book I read a few ago called The Wounded Leader by Ackerman and Maslin-Ostrowski. In the book they suggest schools have leadership resistant architecture typically “the conspiracy of busyness: where there is little time for leaders to convene people together to plan, organise and follow through –… Read more“The Wounded Leader”

Prioritising your workload

I recently read a short article in the January ASCD “education update” by Elena Hegland, an English teacher in New York, on the topic of prioritising work. It got me thinking about principal’s priorities. Elena lists her top 5 priorities as Student well being (“taking care of kids comes first”) Lesson planning… Read more“Prioritising your workload”

Victoria the “ice” capital of South East Asia !

Today at our local State principal network we heard from Les Twentyman a long serving youth outreach worker who has supported the marginalised and at risk young people who are generally homeless and on the streets. A few years ago he set up a charity called the 20th man, a… Read more“Victoria the “ice” capital of South East Asia !”

School Based Instructional Rounds: a progressive book club discussion (Ch 1 & 2)

In an earlier post I wrote about personal teacher professional learning. One of our teachers is doing a leadership course at Bastow Institute this year and her research project is using instructional rounds at the school level with teachers. One of the professional learning strategies we are using is a book… Read more“School Based Instructional Rounds: a progressive book club discussion (Ch 1 & 2)”

young people’s anger – here’s one thought.

I’m fortunate as a school leader that my teachers share their ideas and thoughts with me. This is one teachers share last week that resonates so strongly with me – how does one promote young people’s conversations about dealing with emotions (in this case anger). If your running a classroom… Read more“young people’s anger – here’s one thought.”

identifying teacher itches to scratch

Schools in Victoria have many standardised data sets about student learning, student attitudes to school, parent opinion surveys and finally staff opinion surveys. This post focuses on this last data set, staff opinion. There was industrial action for the 3 earlier years stopping this new survey from being conducted in… Read more“identifying teacher itches to scratch”

Do we teach handwriting skills to young writers – OK – when and why?

Recently I was in team meeting where teachers were discussing when to teach 5 year olds handwriting. It got me to thinking about why of my age and the old pen licences which we scrapped at least 10 years ago. In fact our 2015 foundation year booklist has black, blue, red… Read more“Do we teach handwriting skills to young writers – OK – when and why?”

The pendulum conundrum of strategic planning.

Over the past 18 months we as a school having been reviewing our performance as a school through the student, teacher and parent lenses. There was lots to celebrate which we have. However human nature is a curious things for we seek the road to improvement – not necessarily enjoying… Read more“The pendulum conundrum of strategic planning.”

Provoking student interest in learning

I say again I’m in a fortunate role as principal to see some amazing products and processes of learning and I’m guilty of not sharing these as often as I should. So here goes: the first two photos show an 11-year-old student’s investigation into the scientific understandings behind whirlpools. Students… Read more“Provoking student interest in learning”

Shirley Clarke says tell students the truth if their work needs work.

  I’m re-reading Shirley Clarke’s book first published in 2008 on active learning and formative assessment. One of the points she makes in the book is the link between higher self-esteem and a growth mindset. We need to show enthusiasm for challenging tasks and ensure failure is followed with celebration… Read more“Shirley Clarke says tell students the truth if their work needs work.”

A twist on parent teacher interviews

This week we completed our 2nd round of parent teacher interviews. They were held in August, which is just over half way through the academic school year. So what’s different you might ask? The students 1/2 year written reports were sent home in June – I hear some saying isn’t… Read more“A twist on parent teacher interviews”

What do you remember of the first 100 days of your school experience?

  This week I was invited to visit the foundation years classrooms where they celebrated the first 100 days of their schooling experience. Each child had to bring a collection of 100 things to share with the other students. They shared the last hour with their year 4 buddies. I… Read more“What do you remember of the first 100 days of your school experience?”

A crash course in Chinese History.

As crash courses go and allowing for a few mistakes like the great wall was started by the Qin dynasty and the Ming dynasty, like the others, just expanded and fixed the Wall or that Chinese recorded history is 5000 not 2000 years old this short clip is worth viewing for… Read more“A crash course in Chinese History.”