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by Joshua Block

“Teaching would not be possible without time devoted to reflection and rejuvenation. In the same way that crops need to be rotated so that soil can be replenished, teachers need time away from the classroom to rediscover different parts of their identities and return to classrooms and students with renewed joy, creative ideas, and reaffirmed visions of themselves as educators.  Summer is a time for reflection, scholarship, and a chance to give myself a break from the daily cycle of planning and feedback that make the school year such a whirlwind.”

What are your plans for rejuvenation this summer?

https://www.edutopia.org/blog/summer-reading-and-rejuvenation-joshua-block

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"Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new."
~Albert Einstein

Remote teaching has been a new learning curve for all of us! Students and teachers have gained helpful, new knowledge from their perseverance in these interesting times.

Visit the link below for more ideas on fostering perseverance.

https://www.connectionsacademy.com/support/resources/article/4-tips-for-empowering-students-to-persevere

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from Elena Aguilar

“The summer is the perfect time to plan. Even three days of work can yield months of results. Once you start, you'll get into it, and you'll thank yourself next year.”  

This article gives ideas on how to plan, when to plan, and what to plan so your time is fun and productive and invigorating.  We need to keep in mind preparing for digital or classroom experiences.

https://www.edutopia.org/lesson-planning-fun

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Many of you have been collaborating with grade or team members. It has strengthened your ability to teach on-line and you have shared lesson responsibilities to lighten the load.

Instructional coach and TechEd editor Lauren Davis says, “The beauty of collaboration is not only the ability to tap into various perspectives and ideas, but also to share responsibility for our students’ learning. The more people invested in a student’s education, the better the chance that student has to be successful.”

During this interesting teaching moment in history, continue to reach out to your colleagues, support each other and keep up your excellent effort.

If you would like to read more about the positive effects of teacher collaboration on students success read:

https://www.schoology.com/blog/teacher-collaboration

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As we prepare for the future and returning to school, here is some great advice from Sean Slade, Senior Director of Global Outreach at ASCD: 

“We may not have control over the syllabus. We may not have control over the revisional work to be caught up. We have no control over what has taken place across our schools, our communities, our country and our world…

...but we do have some control over the climate, culture, and sense of community and belonging we develop in our classrooms and across our schools. We have a choice in how we respond and support our students, our colleagues, and our families.

So until our new normal becomes normal, let's just focus on controlling what we can.” 

Shared in ASCD and CDC Webinar
Leading Schools During the Coronavirus Crisis: Medium-Term Steps
Tuesday, April 28, 2020

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As we contemplate the effects of losing 10 weeks or so of school, John Hattie reminds us that “It is not the time in class, but what we do in the time we have, that matters”.  In a current post, Visible Learning Effect Sizes When Schools Are Closed: What Matters and What Does Not, Hattie notes:

  • Do not panic
  • Worry more about subjects in which parents have the least skill
  • Engage students in optimal tasks designed to find out where students are and where they need to go in their learning 
  • Create many opportunities for social interaction
  • Listen to feedback from students about their learning

View the full post to learn more about, “What Matters and What Does Not.” https://corwin-connect.com/2020/04/visible-learning-effect-sizes-when-schools-are-closed-what-matters-and-what-does-not/

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As we anticipate the future of our students, we need to keep in mind the emotional needs of students.

Kathleen Minke, the executive director of the National Association of School Psychologists, made this observation: 

“School psychologists know that academic efforts cannot proceed without addressing psychological and emotional trauma. Learning will not occur unless the emotional needs of both students and adults are addressed. Indeed, pretending that everything is 'normal' will likely exacerbate underlying traumas and further delay genuine recovery.”

She recommends these ideas:

  1. Recovery plan
  2. Assess, don’t assume
  3. Develop a resource plan
  4. Use Professional Development

Emotional trauma

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New findings shed light on best approaches
By Sarah D. Sparks

 

“A Review of Educational Research analysis of 46 studies found that strong teacher-student relationships were associated in both the short- and long-term with improvements on practically every measure schools care about: higher student academic engagement, attendance, grades, fewer disruptive behaviors and suspensions, and lower 

school dropout rates. Those effects were strong even after controlling for differences in students' individual, family, and school backgrounds.”

https://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2019/03/13/why-teacher-student-relationships-matter.html

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Building Your Resilience
From:   American Psychological Association

Like building a muscle, increasing your resilience takes time and intentionality.Focusing on four core components — building connections, fostering wellness, finding purpose and embracing healthy thinking — can empower you to withstand and learn from difficult experiences.

The important thing is to remember you’re not alone on the journey. While you may not be able to control all of your circumstances, you can grow by focusing on the aspects of life’s challenges that you can manage with the support of loved ones and trusted professionals.

https://www.apa.org/topics/resilience

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