Posts Tagged ‘passion’

Rigor, relevance and relationships were my “Big 3” when I began my leadership role about 7 years ago. I would say my “Big 3” have certainly changed but not all that much just in order- relationships, relevance and rigor. I may call them different things but the three R’s are still very important to what drives my work. Although relationships and people are the most critical elements of a successful school, relevance is something that is far more difficult to attain but equally as important. As for rigor…

“Rigor is defined as thno student ever minee difficult and unpleasant conditions or experiences that are associated with something; harsh inflexibility in opinion, temper, or judgment; an act or instance of strictness, severity, or cruelty.” Rigor is important but a little overrated.

As I stated in my previous post, passion based learning or teaching sets the stage for growing grit. It is the relevance to what we do. Students need to know the why. For generations educators have been asked the age old question, “Why do we need to learn this?” We should be able to answer that for students. As the information age becomes part of our past thanks to Google, it is increasingly important for people to ask why and why not questions. We need to foster questioning in our students.  The answers to those questions provides the relevance that students need in order to be curious, inquisitive and gritty.

Students need to see what passion looks like. Teachers need to model passion for their content and for learning. Passion is necessary to grow grit.  5 ways to instill passion in your students and in your classroom:

1. Give students choice

2. Celebrate innovation and risk taking – be ready to take the risks

3. Take time to discover students’ passions

4. Find students authentic audiences for their passions

5. Provide time for creative thought and inquiry


Passion and Practice

Posted: September 8, 2013 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

A new year brings new problems, people and passion. The start of this year was a little different from others. We hired new administrators, new teachers and have many new students. Although there was sweat, tears, and laughter, passion permeated conversations, team building activities, and professional learning. I recognize a perpetuating climate of anxiousness, exhaustion and a feeling of indifference. It is a culture for which each of us are responsible. I challenge each of us to own that responsibility and take the time to pat each other on the back, say good morning with a smile, ask each other how you made a difference in a student’s life (because you do,) and assume the best in others first.  WE need to work harder at being optimistic. Angela Maiers posted 12 ways to Let People Know They Matter – easy, practical ways to begin this work! I commit to use #1 this week and make an effort to begin and end sentences with the word “you.” YOU make a difference in the lives of hundreds of kids. What kind of difference are YOU making?

A letter from a Mother of Sandy Hook Victim to teachers….