Monthly Archives: September 2015

Part 2 Building Positive School Climates: 18 Ideas From Principals

In a previous post, I shared Building Positive School Climates: 20 Ideas from Principals on ways to better serve school communities.
Last week I attended a gathering of innovative school leaders when we were asked for ideas on what’s working for our schools. So I jotted down 18 comments from principals to pass along for building positive school climates: Continue reading

3 Lessons In Managing Under Pressure

When I was in high school and college, my brothers and I worked part-time diving for mussell shells in the Kentucky Lake area.

Photo credit: Kenneth Frizzell

Photo credit: Kenneth Frizzell

We would sell them by the pound at local markets, and those shells would in turn be sold to Japanese markets. Apparently, the pearly-white cuts from those shells are unique implants for growing cultured pearls in oysters.

One day I was climbing across the bottom of an area that was ten to twelve feet deep. As I found shells, I’d place them in a net-bag I had clipped to one side of my weight belt. As always, the only sounds I could hear were the hissing breaths from my regulator. Continue reading

10 Digital Tools For Enhancing Your Communication

A few weeks ago, I received an email from a fellow administrator in Sydney, Australia, asking for permission to re-publish a recent blog post for their executive newsletter.

Image Credit:

Image Credit:

Although he and I are literally sitting on opposite sides of the globe from one another, we were able to share ideas and thoughts as quickly as I can with school friends in my own building.

Connecting with educators is just one benefit of using technology like blogging or social media. The other benefits include communicating with teachers, students, parents, and your community. What are other practical ways that technology can enhance service and communication with others?

Here are 10 ideas from my own digital toolbox that may help you in reaching-out or connecting: Continue reading

Planning Ahead For What Matters: 7 Tips For Time Management

One day I was standing outside my classroom during a passing period when I suddenly had one of those Jedi-moments that teachers have–when I could tell something was about to happen.
I could just feel a change in the hallway tones and hums, and I saw some unfamiliar movement by the doorway of a classroom down the hallway and to my right.

Out of curiosity, I made my way that direction, and then I saw a rush of students jostling just inside the door. When I pushed through, I caught sight of three students tangled in a fight: a boy and girl ganging up one boy who was trying to fend off their blows. Continue reading

Don’t Underestimate Your Influence

I grew up in West Tennessee where my parents raised the six of us on a small farm in the middle of nowhere.

Image credit: Wunderphotos

Image credit: Wunderphotos

Gravel roads, winding creeks, swampy bottoms, large fields, and rambling woods were my playgrounds. We were so rural that when Daddy built the basement home we lived in, for a while we had no electricity or running water.

Eventually, we had both, but we lived for years without a telephone or even a mailbox. Because my father rejoined the military when I was in high school, we moved to New York and Virginia for a few years, but we returned to our Tennessee home where my parents still live today. Continue reading