Hitting the Ground… #sol21
August 31, 2021
I wanted to title this Hitting the Ground Running, but I don’t think that’s the approach I’m taking this year.
I am approaching the school year cautiously and thoughtfully.
Yesterday was day one-ish. A day of preparing and professional development.
I resisted spending the last super hot week in the school building, opting to prepare schedules, plans and professional development outlines at home surrounded by a restroom I share with no one, many lunch options, and sans mask.
It was a good call.
I had given the literacy center a thorough straighten at the end of the year. All I needed to return were my summer study books.
Last week, I had decided to be proactive and invited the grade level teams and one intervention teams to a half hour review Monday morning of our district goals for this year and possible means to achieving the goal. I also invited the principal to come along to my coaching cycle. Our training goal this year, way overdue, is Firm Goals, Flexible Means.
The goals this year are deceptively simple.
Much in the way that I’m concern for how the students will return to us this fall, I am concerned for our teachers. Will they have recovered from the previous eighteen months? These new explorations will strike at the heart of balanced literacy and many of the core beliefs that are the bedrock of reading workshop. Will we have the flexibility to integrate new ideas?
So we sat and talked grade level after grade level, listening, talking, waiting, committing.
It was beautiful.
These educators after a year of struggle are prepared to do what is needed to help their student recover, emotionally and developmentally. Not one person talked about loss. No one complained about our past vulnerability to harm or even to the current threat.
They considered. They asked. They suggested.
Today, they asked for more. We talked more. We planned more.
Tomorrow we will have one more day of deep self directed learning before we greet our students for the year.
We have unspoken hopes. Hope of a safe, healthy, full year of learning. Hope that this in-person, full day learning will reap strong learning outcomes for our students.
A good start so far, I’m energized for the work. Not running into it this year, but moving forward, bringing everyone along.