Saturday, August 18, 2018

Saturday Sayings: In the Margin

School starts in exactly six days, which reflects why I've spent the last week furiously creating a comfortable and welcoming space for 23 new first graders. With that huge task crossed off my list, this morning I found myself ready to ponder lesson plans. As I opened up last year's plans to the first week of school, I was greeted with a list typed in the margin: "Things I Say." Reading through my list left me feeling not only inspired, but greatly satisfied.

I believe effective teachers are well planned. They don't show up on day one or 100 unprepared. They plan spaces, materials, activities, and lessons - all essential tools for a powerful learning environment. But what about words? I'm convinced effective teachers are intentional and strategic planners of words, which I will argue are just as important as all the other areas we plan for.

Words wield a powerful influence, and it's obvious from Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram that they're on the minds of teachers everywhere as they prepare themselves for a new and fresh opportunity to literally transform the lives of students. I might suggest that we find ways to document those words and hold ourselves accountable for saying them...repeatedly. 

With satisfaction, I added "Things I Say" to the margin of this year's first week of plans. I even added a few new things I intend to speak into the atmosphere. I'm bound and determined that my words will make a difference.

What's in your margin? 

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