Pieces of me: Relationships and Technology

There are many pieces that make up who we are as people. These pieces often become apparent in the work we do.

One piece that makes up who I am is that I believe that relationships matter more than anything, especially in the work we do as educators. Rita Pierson once said, “Kids don’t learn from people they don’t like”.

Some say technology gets in the way of building relationships with others. How can you connect when your face is in a screen? However, I would argue that there are many ways in which technology brings us closer together.

Take look at this ad from Apple. It represents how I feel about technology and the power it has to bring us closer together.

“The Song” – Apple’s Christmas Commercial 2014: http://youtu.be/N2ubgxn8aQ8

It’s Time for #Readabration!

Update for Dec 15-19

I am excited to be participating in this year’s #Readabration with my friends and colleagues at Hilliard City Schools.  #Readabration is a celebration of reading over the upcoming winter break.  #Readabration encourages others to read and it is so simple to join!

  1. Take a picture of a stack of books you plan on reading.
  2. Share it via Twitter using the hashtag #Readabration.
  3. Enjoy reading!
Check out Tonya Buelow’s blog post from last year to read more about #Readabration!
!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?’http’:’https’;if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+”://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js”;fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,”script”,”twitter-wjs”);

Videos That Inspire


Articles Worth Reading

“Hope” http://www.hilliardschools.org/hope/

(Listen to) EduAllStars Episode 74 – Josh Stumpenhorst from EduAllStars http://www.stitcher.com/s?eid=36290551

“Something’s Gotta Go…” http://georgecouros.ca/blog/archives/4944

“8 TED Talks to foster creativity”

“We need schools to be different” http://dangerouslyirrelevant.org/2014/12/we-need-schools-to-be-different.htm

“Digital Citizenship in the Time of ‘Instant Celebrity'” http://georgecouros.ca/blog/archives/4932

“10 Ways to Start With Strengths in Schools”  http://chriswejr.com/2014/11/30/10-ways-to-start-with-strengths-in-schools/#.VIw_6fAEJel.twitter

“Great teachers can jump” http://smartblogs.com/education/2014/12/09/great-teachers-can-jump/

Upcoming Dates

Mon Dec 15 — Team Planning with Kelly and Kay

Tues Dec 16, 3:40 — Tchr Steering Committee meeting


Fri Dec 19, 2014 — Holiday Parties

Dec 22, 2014-Jan 4, 2015 — Winter Break

"What’s your word, Mr. H?"

Update for Dec 8-12

This weekend, I ran across the journal pictured above and I had to buy it.  I like that it’s a great reminder for me to stay focused on what really matters in my life and at school. Words are so powerful and can be used to lift ourselves and help us remember to stay focus on what’s important.

This week, we held our second School Community Meeting to share out the words we felt best completed the statement “At Alton Darby Elementary, We Are __________!”

While all of the words used were different, they all reflected that students feel that our learning community is a welcoming and positive place to be.  This is to the credit of the staff and families who have helped to create and nurture a positive culture.

On Tuesday, I was out and about in classrooms and during a conversation with a student, she asked “What’s your word, Mr. H?”

This was something I struggled with during this little project.  It’s hard for me to choose just one word to represent what I feel reflects our school.  But it was a struggle for others so why shouldn’t I struggle too?

But honestly, I think the best way for me to complete the statement is by using all of the words that were generated.  And that’s exactly how I answered the student:

“I didn’t actually pick a word because it’s important that I represent and support all of the words that were used. I pick everyone’s word because I am the principal for all of you.”

Was that the easy way out? Maybe. But what will be the real challenge for me is making sure the work we do supports and encourages the words our kids and staff used to reflect how they feel about our school. Because at Alton Darby Elementary, We Are…

Community, Diverse, Resolvers, Strong, Together, Family, Team Players, Hard Workers, Love, Democracy, Smart, Teamwork, Believers, Creatives, Yummy, Individualized, Turstworthy, Together, Powerful, Higgenbawesome, Kind, Possibilities, Poised, and Unique!

Videos that inspire

Students’ Voice: Empowering Transformation

Worth a watch/listen — Good conversation about student voice in the school day. Pernille talks about what is possible and what is reality.  I think she will affirm many of our thoughts and beliefs about school.

Also — Pernille wrote a book that I am reading called “Empowered Schools, Empowered Students” that is also apart of the Corwin Connected Educator Series

This series includes books by mostly practicing teachers and principals and they are terrific as far as driving new ideas (And they are about 70 pages each).  I am enjoying them and I thought you might too: http://www.corwin.com/books/Book245107?subject=C00&seriesId=Series2504&fs=1

Schools that work for kids — My favorite line from this is “We’ve made school work really well for us [teachers].” Thanks to Cathy Mere for sharing!

Upcoming Dates — 

Tuesday, Dec 9 — 
8:00-8:45 — BAC Meeting
9:00 — Community Outing with Mrs. Shively

Fri Dec 12, 2014 — 
7am – 9am Board of Edu Bldg Tours – HMS, ADE/HPS & DCR

Tues Dec 16, 3:40 — Tchr Steering Committee meeting


  • Course catalog’s are scheduled to go home with kids tomorrow (12/8).
  • Students and parents will pick their session through Signup Genius (No paper registrations! Yay!)
  • Rosters should be ready on Friday (12/12).

Fri Dec 19, 2014 — Holiday Parties

Dec 22, 2014-Jan 4, 2015 — Winter Break