Recently I attended the Future Ready Summit in Olathe, KS with Michelle Nebel, Stephani Reynolds, Logan Lightfoot (HS), Mindy Andrews (WV), and Amy Harder(MS). It was a very exciting 2 days of collaboration with our district team and with people from other districts. The topic (which you might infer...) was "How do we CHANGE what we are doing to create schools that develop students that are ready for the future?"
All of these school districts are 1:1 with technology...but our discussion revolved around the fact that it's only the technology that makes it EASIER to improve the school experience for our students. Technology makes it easier for students to collaborate and communicate outside of our school walls, think critically with new information, and creatively share or develop a new way to present learning. Our task in 1:1 classrooms is finding ways to "level up" the learning activities; put more decision-making in the students' hands, and enhance it with technology!
One of our discussion points was that positive relationships are a foundation for any successful school-no matter what kind of initiatives you are hoping to implement. This aligns perfectly with what we have been discussing as a building. We also spent time on Day 1 talking about how physical and emotional needs of students must be met in order for them to really learn, or want to learn. Again, aligning perfectly! We listened to a keynote speaker that has transformed many high poverty districts to be high performing. Meeting the needs of students and building relationships with students and families have to come first. It's so exciting to think that we have so much in place for our students, and with some additional changes we can start providing them with some highly engaging learning activities that will really make students WANT to learn.
As we begin our morning meeting daily routine, I challenge you to maintain a sense of urgency for student achievement in your classroom. It will feel good knowing that we have taken some steps to create a climate more conducive to learning for our students. It will feel even better to see them rise to our expectations!
Christi Rice | Lewis Elementary Principal
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