• K-12 Online Conference 09

  • Edublog Awards 2009

    The File Cabinet was nominated for an Edublog Award this year. I am honored!

  • Game Classroom

  • Top 50 Educator Innovator Award

    Top 50 Education Innovator Award - Online Colleges
  • Discovery Educator Network
  • Diigo

    diigo education pioneer
  • The future is not some place we are going to but one we are creating. The paths are not to be found, but made, and the activity of making them changes both the maker and the destination. John Schaar American Scholar and Professor
  • Shelfari: What am I reading?


5 Things That Make My School Unique

I was recently tagged in a meme by Penny Ryder at Teaching Challenges. I couldn’t bear to let her down! Besides, I had such a great time learning more about my PLN through the last meme that I have to participate in this one. I love anything that focuses on the positive parts of what is going on in our schools.
trophyHere are the rules:
The general format for a meme is to 1) mention the person who tagged you 2) write your response 3) tag someone else. I want this meme to be flexible, so there is only one rule: “If the shoe doesn’t fit, change the shoe”. If you want to change the number of things, change it. If you want to change the wording, change it. If you don’t want to tag anyone, don’t. Take it and make it your own. (Feel free to pass this paragraph along)

Here are the 5 things that make my school unique:
  • Wednesday is Team Planning Day. Every Wednesday afternoon, you will find all of the teachers in the school participating in grade level and/or vertical planning. We make decisions, review curriculum, share resources, vent and celebrate together every week. We talk about intervention and accleration strategies. We plan school trips and social outings. These weekly meetings ensure that every student in our school gets the benefit of all the brains. Also, no teacher is left behind as planning and sharing takes place!
  • We love technology. I wish we could say that we had it all figured out, that all of the teachers were model instructors in 21st century skills. For the most part, our staff is open and excited about what technology has to offer our students. Our administration has put their money behind this vision. Every classroom has a SMARTBoard. Every teacher gets monthly training and sharing opportunities. When something comes up that looks interesting or engaging for students, then the teachers take it upon themselves to seek out the resources to implement new activities in their classrooms.
  • It’s about the kids. When it comes to spending money, planning budgets, organizing resources, or dividing up personnel, we are able to keep our eyes on what is best for our students. There is less petty discussion over what’s mine or yours and more focused debate on the greater good.
  • The substitute teachers. OK, so that sounds a bit odd, but it’s true. We have a core group of substitute teachers that are at the school almost everyday for one teacher or another. The amazing part is their dedication to the art of teaching. Because all classrooms have SMARTBoards, they requested training on them. They didn’t want the teachers to have to change their plans or deviate from the technology that the kids love because someone was going to be out. They give their own time to keep the kids at the forefront.
  • Holiday Hall Parties. We don’t do a Christmas party at school. We celebrate for the whole month. Throughout December, each hall (there are 4) provides a meal for the whole staff on their hall. Some choose to serve breakfast, others do finger foods, and some do soup and sandwiches. It sometimes seems difficult to see what other grades and halls are doing with their students. This is a great chance to socialize, to learn and to be in awe of the things going on around our school every day!
Thanks Penny for starting this meme. Now I’d love to hear from…

13 Responses

  1. Hi,

    Wow! Yur school sounds like the ideal place for a new teacher to work. So many new teachers are bittered by a lack of a support system.

    I was especialy taken by the amount of collaborative teaching that goes in your school. In fact, I am coauthoring a book on collaborative teaching between ESL and general education teachers. Would you like to contribute your experience answer for us a few important questions. Here are the links –



    You may answer as many as you like!

    Thank you –
    Dorit Sasson
    “Helping You Become a Successful and Confident Teacher”
    The New Teacher Resource Center

    Dorit Sasson
    The New Teacher Resource Center
    “Helping You Become a Successful and Confident Teacher”

  2. It sounds like you have a very lovely school and that you appreciate it. You are truly blessed to be in such a place.

  3. Thanks for keeping the meme going. It was great to hear more about your school. It sounds like a really great place and an active learning environment for the whole school.

  4. Sounds like your school is a positive learning environment. It’s always great to hear how other schools make their schools special. l
    How does your half day Wednesday work. Our district is currently looking for a way to make a similar situation work without losing that all important learning time.
    How exciting that your staff has began to embrace technology! We are getting there, but have a few reluctant teachers who are afraid to integrate it into their students learning. But, we are working on that.
    Thanks for sharing.

  5. […] Meme #1–What is the most unique thing about your school? […]

  6. […] Meme #1–What is the most unique thing about your school? […]

  7. It would be great to teach in your school!

  8. Five Five Productions is collaborating with Fox 21 to find our country’s most inspiring and groundbreaking teachers to join forces with the goal of transforming a struggling school in to a winning one!

    If you are or know of a teacher with tremendous charisma, vision, and passion for education, we want to hear from you!

    We’re looking for uncommonly creative and inventive math and science instructors, literature and history teachers, all-star coaches, music department maestros, and principals at the top of their class.

    Please contact us with nominations and any questions you may have! If you’d like to nominate yourself, please tell us where and what you teach, and what makes your teaching style so unique and effective.

    Desiree Mandelbaum
    Casting Producer
    310.558.0898 ext.145

  9. Pls advise me more on how to make my school unique because my school is located in a competitive environs.I am the school manager of a school

  10. ver nice and creative

  11. wow I would love to work in your school even now! you are so lucky and blessed in a good school .

    Thankyou so much,!!!!!!


  13. It was very useful thank u

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