Feb 15

The Attribution Myth

Teaching

The third myth is the attribution myth. The attribution myth has to do with cause and effect and it happens when we attribute the effect of student behavior to the wrong cause. Sometimes, we wrongly explain a students’ motivation or behavior. Other times, we over simplify a cause by omitting steps or ignoring other factors […]

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Feb 08

The Fake It Before You Make It Myth

Teaching

The second myth about high expectations that plague many educators is the “Fake it before you make it” myth. Those who believe this myth argue that you can act your way into developing high expectations for students. They encourage teachers to pretend that they have high expectations for students by using high expectancy behaviors such […]

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Feb 08

The Pygmalion Myth

Teaching

The largest myth about expectations is the Pygmalion myth. It is based on the ancient Greek myth by Ovid about a sculptor named Pygmalion who fell in love with one of his statues. He treated the statue as if it were a real woman – buying it flowers, calling it any manner of endearments, and […]

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Jan 25

Great Expectations

Teaching

Everyone agrees that high expectations are critical to students’ ability to thrive in school. We all accept the idea that when students encounter teachers with high expectations, they work harder, achieve more, and sustain their efforts over time. Yet, while we can agree that high expectations are necessary, we are not as clear about how […]

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Jan 19

Chicago Happens

Motivation

One Monday morning not too long ago, I boarded a direct flight from Baltimore, MD to Chicago, Illinois. My plan was to land at Midway at 10:15 am, pick up my rental car, drive 20 minutes to a nearby school district, and begin a Differentiation Train-the-Trainers Workshop at 12:30 pm.   It was early, so I […]

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Jan 11

There is Something about January

Teaching

About mid January, right after the new semester begins and just before the start of testing, something really strange starts to happen in schools all over the world.I experienced it myself as a teacher and then again as a school administrator and now I see it every year in the schools where I serve.People are […]

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lessons
Dec 21

3 Things 2016 Has Taught Me

Coaching

I have to admit, 2016 was a really tough year for me for a lot of reasons. And yet, it’s those tough seasons that teach us some of life’s biggest lessons. This week, I want to share three of the biggest lessons I learned (or relearned) this year. After you’ve read them, I’d love to […]

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feedback
Dec 14

How to Collect Feedback from Those You Serve

Feedback

One of the things we often forget is that feedback is a two-way street. We are accustomed to giving feedback to the students or teachers we serve, but how good are we at soliciting feedback from them and using that feedback to improve our practice?If you haven’t collected feedback recently from those you directly serve, […]

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school changes
Dec 07

Small Changes Make A Big Difference

Coaching

I remember the first time I saw my father change a tire. I wondered how on earth he was going to lift our massive Buick in order to get the flat tire off the car. Would he lift it himself? Would he find three other strong men to help him, one at each corner? Imagine […]

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2017 planning
Nov 30

Why Year-Long Plans Don’t Work

Coaching

When I was studying to be a teacher, I had big plans. I had year-long plans, 3-year plans, 5-year plans, and 10-year plans.Thankfully, I was able to achieve a lot of my plans early on. But mid-way through my teaching career, I hit a wall. Suddenly, it was harder to set 1-year, 5-year, and 10-year […]

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