I was visiting Hayden’s room and saw her employ an innovative solution to a SchoolNet problem. She couldn’t print out answer sheets for her common assessment tests [which we all have to do] and didn’t have enough computers for every student. Her hack was to have students complete the test by hand and they would later submit answers later at a station she set up in her room. With some great planning and management all she needed was two computers to get thru this – great work!

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If you’ve visited the new lab in D2, you will have noticed that all the older desktops have been stripped out. When they took these older computers, they replaced them with a Chomebook cart! [The older desktops had to be removed because they could not be updated to support Microsoft OS changes] This was my first time getting a look at the new lab and new mobile devices in action and I have to say, it was great to see. Two things struck me here: 1) teachers have flexibility to give or take away devices as needed or when students are ready and 2) look at the workspace that has been created with this move. There is so much space students can collaborate in and get to the good learning discussions! Please take advantage of this! We will have to change this name from a computer lab to a LEARNING LAB! Let’s plan for some great activities.

Congrats to two of our BroncoStars! Ms Willingham and Ms Gorman were both recipients of a Bright Ideas Grant! 20141103_135118They will each use these awards to help instruction and learning in their classroom. Way to show that #BroncoPride


Welcoming our newest Broncos!

I’ve made this announcement before but I’d like to take this time to again welcome our two newest Broncos to the family! Please join me in welcoming Ms Goode and Mr Cockerill to Spring Lake Middle! They are taking huge leaps to start after the school year has began but I can tell you from visiting them frequently this first week, they are right at home! Glad you both are on board!

Collaborative Planning and Protected Planning

As we are diving into our second nine weeks, I want to take some time to talk about a big part of our planning culture that will make a huge difference in our student achievement and our teaching efficacy and that’s our collaborative planning on Wednesdays and protected planning on Thursdays. The goal of these two days is not to give you another meeting but to leave you better equipped and more empowered to make a difference on student learning and achievement. Our design and goal for Wednesday is to share and lead talks on teaching strategies, tools, data discussions and then help you in planning efforts for the upcoming days. After Wednesdays we should know what we are about to teach [pacing], why we are teaching it [data] and to whom we are delivering/personalizing instruction for. Thursdays is your time to  get together and plan with your counterpart. You should not be scheduling any meetings other than for instructional planning – we are protecting that time.

This days work in tandem for a purpose and if used properly and with fidelity can yield great success! I’ve talked about our 8th grade math teachers’ success before as a great example of this success. Sams and Fulmore dive into Wednesday talks and actively plan together what will be done in the classroom. They are a great example of agreeing on what needs to be taught, then they have the opportunity to personalize on Thursdays how each will deliver in their classroom.

These days are an integral part of our planning culture. We need to make sure we are getting the most out of it because our kids need us to get the most out it.


Monday 11.11

Tuesday 11.12 – VETERANS’ DAYIMG_20141105_053738

Wednesday 11.13

  • Collaborative Planning

Thursday 11.14

  • Protected Planning
  • Athletic Banquet – 6:00 – 8:00 pm

Friday 11.15