Friday, February 5, 2016

MRVED Business

Superintendents Meet with Senators and Representatives
The MRVED Superintendents had the opportunity to meet and visit with a couple local senators and representatives on Wednesday, January 27th.  Senator Dahms, Senator Koenen, and Representative Swedzinski talked with the Superintendents and answered questions regarding the upcoming session. Overall, it was a positive meeting and both sides felt they learned something from each other.  Thank you to the Senators and Representatives for taking the time to meet with our school administrators and hear the issues facing rural schools.

Upcoming Meetings
February 17, 2016  Community Ed
February 19, 2016  Principals' Council (11:30 a.m. start time)
February 22, 2016  Science
February 23, 2016  Teachers' Advisory Council (TAC)
February 24, 2016  Superintendent's Council

Big List of Educational Grants and Resources

Big List of Educational Grants and Resources
One of my favorite educational sites to visit on a regular basis is Edutopia.  Edutopia provides you with many practical ideas and offers tons of resources and links to explore.  Last week, they came out with their list of Educational Grants and Resources.  The list is amazing and has some awesome opportunities for teachers.  Give it a glance-over today!

Big List of Educational Grants and Resources

Better Conversations Series

Better Conversation Series
I have spent the past year learning about what it takes to be an instructional coach.  Through the process of learning about instructional coaching, there has been one piece that has stood out to me more than any, and that is that conversation is the key to everything.  You can have the best instructional coaching process in the world, but it is truly the conversation between the coach and teacher that leads to the greatest gains.  I have also learned that by learning how to have a better conversation, it has affected all other aspects of my life, from socially to how I interact with my wife and kids.  This series we will focus on the 6 beliefs of better conversations as outlined in Jim Knights new book, Better Conversations.  This is a book I highly recommend to anyone who wants to learn how to have a better conversation.  Jim Knight does an excellent job talking about his new book in the video below.

Introduction to the 6 Beliefs
The six beliefs as outlined by Jim Knight are:
  1. I see others as equal partners in conversations.
  2. I believe people should have a lot of autonomy.
  3. I want to hear what others have to say.
  4. I don't judge my conversation partners.
  5. Conversation should be back and forth.
  6. Conversation should be life-giving.
These 6 beliefs should guide you in having a productive conversation with someone.  Beliefs drive behavior, so if you truly believe these 6 beliefs, your behavior will follow suit.  Each week we will examine one of the beliefs and see how we can all have better conversations.

Tech Tip - Google Add On's

Using Google Add On's
Google Add On's are created by a third party and are great ways to do things with your Google Doc or Spreadsheet that you normally can't do with Google.  There are some awesome Add On's for educators.

To find the add on's, open a new document, look on the toolbar and you will see the "add on" tab.  Click it, and then go to "get add on's".  From there you can search a variety of Google Doc add on's.  To find the add on's in Sheets, follow the same process.

Google Add On Lists
15 Best Google Drive Add On's For Education from The CoolCat Teacher
10 Good Google Docs, Sheets, and Forms Add-Ons for Teachers from FreeTech4 Teachers

Presidential Election, Primary, Caucus Resources

Election Resources
As the presidential election has been in the news all week, here are a few resources to help kids understand the process of electing a president.  Understanding the process of electing a president will help your students better understand and comprehend news stories about the primary or caucus.  Many adults do not understand this process, so maybe you can teach your students something they can go home and teach mom and dad!

Scholastic - What is a Primary (From 2004 election so dates are wrong)