Critical self-reflection is an important component to being a successful teacher. I've been thinking about how the first half of the school year went. Was it fulfilling? Did I anticipate it would go this way? I was recently inspired by Principal Kafele's essay, SELF DETERMINATION: You Have Got to Want Success for Your Students BADLY! Principal Kafele wrote an essay connecting each principle of Kwanzaa to education. In this one, he asks "Are your students achieving at the levels you expected? Are your students where you expect them to be socially under your guidance?" His questions hit home for me and I am taking a deep look at my mindset as well as my accomplishments.
In relating these questions to the relationships we've built with our class parents I encourage Bloomz teachers to ask, "How do I view my parent relationships thus far? Have I made positive connections?" Teachers need to touch the hearts of students and families while supporting academic growth. How many items did you post on your students' digital portfolios this year? Are you showing a trajectory of growth? I encourage you to scroll through your student portfolios to see what you could add in 2018.
At conferences, some of my class parents shared fears that their child was behind in reading or writing. This is common for parents of emerging readers. I explained that they'd see our hard work pay off after the winter break because January and February are months when emerging readers will typically show leaps and bounds in literacy development.
Being that we are in the second half of the year, teachers should showcase each student's literacy development by sharing the progress on Bloomz. Add images of what books students are reading or videos of them reading out loud and it will help parents know what to read at home. Continue posting writing samples on student timelines to build a substantial portfolio highlighting each student's achievement. Take a day to show each student their current portfolio. Share the moment of accomplishment. Show your admiration for their perseverance. Bask in it with them. This moment of achievement is big! Say to your student with excitement, "Look at this! Look how your writing has improved! What are your goals for the rest of the year? Imagine what you can achieve!" Get your students enthusiastic about success and interested in adding work to their portfolio. When I tell my students a piece of work will go in their Bloomz portfolio, they get serious and take pride in the work they produce. Be determined to continue developing student portfolios and positive relationships via Bloomz as this year progresses.
Now that we are well into the school year, teachers have established relationships with parents. We had a moment to breathe and enjoy our favorite pastimes during winter break and meditate on the year to come. In this second half of the school year we must continue to demonstrate to parents that we are the best partner in their child's education. We must show them where we are taking them. Lead. Document. Share. Post. Connect. Stand Out. You got this! Bloomz makes it easy to do all of these things.
Let's show up in 2018 and be determined to have the best day ever, every day. How can you utilize Bloomz to maximize parent involvement for the second half of this school year? Please leave your comments in the section below.
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