Monthly Archives: January 2014

5 Ways To Respond To Resistance

One of my favorite college education professors would often start class with a provoking question.
As we would grapple with how to answer and/or support our positions, he would stand there with his large hands lifted in the air, his voice booming, “Disequilibrium is the beginning of education!”

It took me a while to figure out that he was teaching us by example. He was trying to help a room full of future teachers see that the greatest learning opportunities in life first start with challenges that “shake” our normal way of thinking about problem solving. Continue reading

10 Tidbits From My First Year of Blogging

This month marks the end of my freshman year of blogging about school leadership.


When I began, my goal was to create content for others in my field but in a way that was accessible to anyone. Specifically, I wanted to record some practical how-to’s for new or aspiring school leaders.

It has been a modest start. After one year of blogging, I have 130 subscribers, and I am averaging 1,000 readers a month. Continue reading

7 Mid-School Year Reminders on Finishing Strong

Recently, I was inspired by the story of Diana Nyad, who made it a personal goal to swim from Cuba to Florida and did so at the age of 64. Her 100-mile feat came with many unsuccessful previous attempts, the pain of jelly-fish attacks, hallucinations, and unwavering teamwork. You can see her inspirational story here.

marathon (2) Image

Like long-distance swimming, being an educator is a marathon, not a sprint. And the start of a new semester is a great time to remind ourselves of what our goals are for the remainder of the school year.

So here are seven reminders I shared with my teachers at the start of this semester that apply to all of us in education: Continue reading

Interview with Steven Parker

The following is a Q & A between Steven Parker and me.

Steven Parker, Virginia M.S. Principal of the Year

Steven Parker, Virginia M.S. Principal of the Year

Steven Parker is the principal of Cedar Lee Middle School in Bealton, Virginia. He was also named the 2013 Virginia Middle School Principal of the Year.

My goal in posting interviews with successful school leaders like Steven is to inspire us to reflect on how our own choices, goals, and actions can affect our lives, our leadership, and our teams. I must also give credit to John Lee Dumas whose great podcast interview questions I have modified for the Q & A’s I have with my guests. Continue reading

Why You Should Set Specific Goals This Year

I know. I know. Not another post on new year resolutions, right?
Talking about goals can be both discouraging and irritating at times. Speaking from my own experience this past year, however, I must say that setting goals was one of the most productive actions I took at the start of 2013.

Time to Reflect
At the start of last year, I had the privilege to attend an overnight retreat with a group of men from my church. Among the many insights our pastor shared with us, he also gave us an end-of-the-day activity that affected me for the rest of the year.

Here is the outline he had us fill out on our own: Continue reading