Aside from the conference itself being an amazing professional development experience filled with inspiring speakers and terrific workshops, NAISAC13 afforded me the opportunity to achieve a professional goal I set for myself– to present! I thank my Head of School for supporting me in this endeavor.
Although I was really nervous leading up to the session, once we got started, it was as if I had presented with Chris Bigenho and Jason Kern many times before. Truth is… I “met” them for the first time on Wednesday night when we arrived in Philly. Here’s a link to our presentation: NAIS 2013- To Flip or Not to Flip: Practical Lessons Learned We had a standing-room-only crowd and the time flew by! The Q and A portion included some insightful questions and we received positive feedback when it was all over. It was an experience I won’t soon forget! Thanks guys!
Here are my top take-aways from the rest of the conference. They come from my tweets and notes.
(I hope I attributed these remarks with the correct people.)
1) Manage Up, Manage Down: (Re)volution in Middle Management was a perfect start to my NAIS experience. This “leading from the middle” session really hit home. Here ’s a link to my tweets throughout the hour. I have looked at these four or five times since I have gotten home, a sure sign of a worthwhile session! Four snippets, in particular, stand out for me:
- “You have to learn to manage “up” to your supervisor. It’s worth becoming a student of leadership.”
- “The Head of School is the Head of School. Your role is to implement the vision of the Head of School.”
- “Change is inevitable, adaptation is optional.”
- “These mantras are worth looking at! Great stuff here!
2) “The difference between a good leader and a great leader: humility… combined with an utterly ferocious will.” -Jim Collins
3) “Signature of mediocrity is chronic inconsistency.
Don’t grab the new silvery thing… every 3 years try another one. chronic inconsistency
Look at the good programs, and make them GREAT…
what are we passionate about? what can we be the best at?
stay focused with great consistency.
no greatness happens in one step!
discipline alone is not enough
discipline AND creativity AND innovation” - Jim Collins
4) “A great institution meets 3 tests:
- superior performance relative to your mission,
- makes a distinctive impact on the world it touches (if your school went away, would it leave an unfillable hole? who would miss you, and why)
- achieves lasting endurance… beyond any leader. Your school cannot be great if it cannot be great without you.” - Jim Collins
5) From 12 Questions for leaders:
”if you have more than 3 priorities you have too many. what should we stop doing?
do we have the right people on our school bus? are 95% of the seats filled with the right people?”- Jim Collins
6) “You must vow to get comfortable each day in shoes that are not your own.” - Sekou Andrews
7) “Leadership is comprised of four things: aspiration, inspiration, perspiration, and respiration.” -Soumitra Dutta
8) ”We give way too much credit to technology. We almost want technology to drag us into change.” ”Technology, as a practice, means not only that new tools change, but also that we can change the practice. We want to see technology as an independent force, but it’s not. It’s ubiquitous.”-Alexis Madrigal
9) ”Let go of the old metrics… ROE(rules of engagement) is the new ROI “-Alexis Madrigal
11) “Your dreams will never have greater meaning if they are not connected to your community.” - Tererai Trent
Thanks to Kim Sivick/ Proof Group and Travis Warren, CEO of Whipple Hill, for arranging meet-ups. It felt good to meet people “face to face” and not speak with the constriction of 140 characters. PLN- Thanks for sharing from wherever you were! You added another dimension to my conference experience. I’m sad I couldn’t connect with everyone I wanted to… hopefully next year!
NAIS Conference Committee- I loved the conference, the wifi, the conference app and the online community. I did, in fact, “Think big and Think great!”
And Philly! You were an awesome venue. I felt so comfortable here.
Note: The week following NAIS, we dedicated our Thursday 9PM EST #isedchat to an #NAISAC13 Recap. Here is the archive from this chat.
I admit it. I’m a corny math teacher! Pi Day provided me with a great excuse to share my enthusiasm with my students outside of the curriculum. I wasn’t really sure what to expect since this was the first time in many years that I was officially celebrating. Here was my Pi Day Plan.
I was really happy with the pi recitation contest. One student was able to recite up to the 30th decimal place. I will post that video soon. Students seemed to like the musical representation of pi and, while they thought some of the jeopardy questions were over the top, we laughed and it got them thinking!
My favorite part was the scavenger hunt. I love to get out of the classroom and so do my students. They were racing around campus and had so much fun! We ended with pie for dessert in the caf.
We had a blast! Here are some pictures.
Tomorrow is Pi Day! (March 14th) It’s been many years since this date did not fall during our March vacation. I am super excited that I
can celebrate it with my students. It gives me a great excuse to have some “math fun” and step outside of the curriculum!
Here’s my plan for tomorrow:
1) We will start with a video on the musical representation of Pi. What Pi Sounds Like
2) Then we will have a pi recitation contest. The student who recites the most decimal places of pi will get 5 bonus points on the test they took today.
3) We will divide into teams and play a few rounds of Pi Day Jeopardy
4) Then I will give the students 15 minutes to complete a Pi Day Scavenger Hunt.
5) We will meet in the caf to have pie for dessert!
That’s the plan. Let’s see how it goes.
Here are some links to resources that helped me pull this all together:Pi Day Activities on Pinterest PiDay 2012 Wikispaces Education World Pi Day Party Scavenger Hunt adapted from Mrs. Burke’s Pi Day Activities
I have a lot to post about the conference… need to catch my breath first. More to follow soon!
I am SO excited for NAIS 2013. I have been looking forward to this for a very long time… on the way home from NAISAC11, I set a goal to present at an NAIS conference, but knew I couldn’t swing a trip to the west coast for 2012. When I saw that 2013 was in Philly, I was in! I had some ideas for presentations and threw some out to some twitter “friends”. I feel so grateful that “To Flip or Not to Flip: Practical Lessons Learned” was accepted (Friday, 1:30- 2:30). Looking forward to seeing/meeting Jason Kern and Chris Bigenho, my co-presenters, in person!
Organizers have done an amazing job with pre-conference buildup and the online community is very robust. Thanks, Chris Bigenho, for all your work on this. And this year, with wifi, I think the online community is going to be on fire!
I downloaded the NAIS AC 2013 app. It’s awesome. I remember feeling overwhelmed with the program book in 2011… no more! The app organizes presentations by time, allows you to organize your schedule, track exhibitors, get info about speakers, follow the twitter feed for the “back channel”, and much more!
When I first downloaded the app, and went to the workshop listing, I was wishing for the names of the presenters (not a huge deal, but I wished for it). Guess what? Next time I went to the app, I was prompted for an update… and the presenters were there! Nothing like your wishes coming true! So, I have been reading through the descriptions trying to plan my days and I realize that I have a huge problem. I want to be in three places at once during several time slots. Not a bad problem to have.
Pat Bassett’s session Greatness: 25 Factors Great Schools Have in Common is on my list. Hope they chose a large venue for it. It will be packed, I am sure!
I just registered for the #edsocialmedia tweetup on Wednesday at 7pm and I”m hoping to meet up with some Twitter friends and spend some f2f time.
I am also hoping that a bunch of #isedchat folks will want to meet, in person, at our normally scheduled time (9pm Thursdays) to join in with the online discussion. This week’s chat topic is “What have you learned today?” and it will be moderated by @srinaldi. (THANK YOU!)
SO… an exciting week lies ahead. I am ready for the learning and sharing… and brain overload. Bring it on!
Given the pros and cons discussed in last week’s #isedchat: Midterms/ Finals: Do they have a constructive purpose?, the verdict is still out on whether midterms are a worthwhile undertaking for students.
No matter how I, personally, feel about them, they are a reality for our Upper School students. And I have to be honest, I struggle with review week… How can I make the best use of time, and meet each students’ need? It’s impossible to go over every topic and each of my students always has different questions on different content.
This year, with Hamden Hall’s new set of iPads, I decided that I was going to have the students create their own review “library”, using the app Educreations. I shared the idea with a colleague who teaches the other section of the same course and he was willing to give it a try. YAY!
Here’s the project pitch I gave to the students in both classes:
You are responsible for helping your fellow Algebra 1 students review for the exam. Each of you will choose a section that we covered and create a 4-6 minute screencast on that section. Your screencast should include any important terminology and at least 4 examples. You will submit your screencast “script” to your teacher for approval. Once it has been approved, you can begin recording. When you are done, please email the video to your teacher so we can add it to the shared GoogleDoc spreadsheet for your use as you review for the exam.
Here’s the link to the rubric and timeline I shared with students.
At this point in time, all scripts have been reviewed, corrected and approved and tomorrow is recording day! I am really looking forward to seeing the final product. I even had one student submit his tonight (AHEAD of schedule). I am also looking forward to students having access to this library of short screencasts made by their peers. They can watch the ones they need to, on demand, as they are completing their review assignments this week and preparing next weekend for the exam.