Being intentional about growing grit in our students and our staff Part 3 of 3

Posted: April 5, 2014 in Uncategorized
Tags: , ,

If we commit to the idea that students need to be gritty to increase their odds of success in the world, what does that mean, what does that look like? As a leader, I need to do more than have conversations with staff about providing opportunities for choice, creativity, innovation and passion. I need to model this by affording teachers to be passion driven, innovative, creative and allowing time to foster those relationships with students. What this looks like….

  • loosening up of pacing guides
  • celebrating innovation
  • allowing failure
  • reflection
  • cultivating passion
  • creative scheduling
  • saying yes
  • new classes
  • finding funding
  • telling our story
  • rewarding growth (not on standardized tests)

I believe one of the most rewarding and beneficial tools for me in my growth as a leader has been finding an authentic audience. Conversations with excellent educators in my building, blogging and building a PLN on Twitter has given me confidence, opportunities to reflect and helped me to develop beliefs about where we need to go in education. Being intentional about affording teachers and students authentic audiences that will help them grow and develop passions and grit is going to be a priority for me in 2014. That would be a great Twitter Chat #miched #edchat ; how to find authentic audiences for students.

  1. The power of authentic audiences for our students cannot be overstated. It is so empowering for students to know that their work will be viewed by authentic audiences. Two tools that are available for this purpose would be student blogging and Skype/Google Hangouts. By publishing their work on blogs, students are able to share their work with an authentic audience- parents, extended families, community members, to name a few. The other tool available, using Skype or a similar resource, allows for students to interact authentically with experts in a particular field. Again, this option provides students with an opportunity to interact with an authentic audience. Now, I say this knowing full well that it is not an easy task to perform. It can be time consuming to set up student blogs and model how to use them. Likewise, it can be time consuming to locate, contact, and arrange opportunities via Skype.
    However, the payoff for all of this work is immeasurable to creating the passion that we seek in our students. Thank you for writing this series of blog posts, they provide me with some great talking points with my staff!

    • Thank you Scott,
      I have enjoyed reading your blog as well. I could not agree with you more about the power of an authentic audience. Just yesterday I had the neighborhood kids come over for a cooking contest and I posted their pictures and descriptions of their dish and they could not stop looking at the results on Facebook of who was voting for which dish. the engagement was extremely high. FYI the girls won but the race was a tight one. I am hoping to encourage more of our staff to create more opportunities for students to create and to help find authentic audiences. Thanks for your suggestions!

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