Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Work Hard. Be Nice. How will we make it happen?

Hey Kid Team!! Here is our new Blog to spend a little time processing the book, Work Hard, Be Nice! Our first post is going to be about chapters 1-3. I will put up some questions that came up for me, and you all feel free to share your thoughts and also any questions that come up for you. I know that NMS can build the culture of achievement that we want! You all are leaders instrumental in making this happen!!


Chapter 1: Tracey brought up a point about how David Levin had to make some changes in New York when he started KIPP there. What are your thoughts about what will and what won't translate to NMS from Yes or KPP?


Chapter 2: What are your thoughts on Teach for America?


Chapter 3: Thoughts while reading.....?????

11 comments:

  1. Chapter 2: I love the Teach for America concept...not only are you getting people who have extensive content knowledge...you get people who are committed to kid helping students in low SES areas. Since they have not had educational classes--this is sometimes a plus because you can help train them to your schools specific needs.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Chapter 1--I agree that things need to be tweaked to work with your specific population and your specific mission, but the core values can remain the same. I think both YES and KIPP have a very defined "why" that every employee buys into. We are working toward the complete buy-in to achieve similar goals.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I believe that we are the ones that need to tweak ourselves to fit the core values, not tweak the program to fit us. If we truly want a change in culture,we need to adapt our approach and way of looking at things.
    Teach for America provides teachers who come to you with no pre-conceived notions about how education should work. They are open minded and willing to do what it takes. We can all bring that freshness if we are open to a major paradigm shift.

    ReplyDelete
  4. No matter what you read and try and implement I think that there always needs to be a 'tweak' or fix to make things real for the situation. The culture of NMS is different from anywhere else and we realize that by making what the changes in the system to fit us. But as Stevie says...the core does remain the same.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I have met a couple of TFA teachers and they have seemed like very good teachers/people. I am sure like every group there are the cream of the crop and the bad apples. Overall I think it is a good way to bring fresh ideas into the world of education.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Teach for America - there are pros and cons to that but fro the most part I agree with Tracey that you will usually get a younger very vivacious teacher that wants to make a difference. The commitment and the willingness to "Be the change you wish to see in the world" are what TFA fosters.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I had some of the same thoughts about tweeking thyself first!! When I think it was Feinberg was told by a kid "These teachers aren't like you".
    I wonder how many kids think this about any of us who aren't on the same page. When we say one thing and do the opposite. We do need to be the change we wish to see in others. Love the book:)

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thanks for the most thoughtful posts! I do too love the concept of TFA. One piece we haven't really talked about yet at NMS is how do we get the enthusiasm for the profession? I know that there is a lot of negativity, and that is all centered around standardized testing. But, what we all saw and heard last week - is that NMS can be the place where we make it happen! Our students will respond to the expectations! The One Voice...One Message is going to be critical as we work on the culture. You all need to take photos of the most wonderful things you see so that I can put them on the blog. Thanks!!!

    ReplyDelete
  9. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I think that for this to be successful (and it can be successful at NMS), we must maintain a teachable spirit. Having been in education for 32 years might seem like I should have everything down pat but I am constantly being reminded that I don't. Kids have a way of being honest to the core and this has its way of humbling us. But, everytime Feinberg and Levin learned, asked, modeled, observed, and grew, it was because they were SEEKING to learn from someone or something and they listened and applied what they learned. When we go to professional development or approach a paradigm shift, we would do well to remember what Harriet Ball told these men while mentoring them, "If you just copy my routine you aren't doing your kids much good. You have to incorporate your own personalities into your lessons." With the coming changes to our school, we must approach them by incorporating our own personalities. She went on to warn them that, "A teacher who didn't enjoy what they did was going to make a mess of it." When we no longer enjoy what we are doing overall, it is time to seek our joy somewhere else.
    As for Teach for America, I don't honestly know much about it but it was responsible for the partnership of Feinberg and Levin. I do like the idea of a program that helps new teachers apply what they have learned in the classroom TO their classroom. Education courses are sometimes a little like a picture, it just doesn't do justice to the real scene.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I completely agree with you , Jan! The learning can never stop, and the passion and enthusiasm is central as well! Thanks for the very thoughtful post, again!!! Lol!

    ReplyDelete