Friday’s are great!  Everybody comes to school with smiles on their faces knowing that in a few short hours they will get a couple of days to unplug.
While teachers work hard and deserve some time to unplug like weekends, winter, and spring breaks, some students do not feel the same way. For some kids in all of our communities, school is the best environment that they have. Teachers are the most positive role model that some kids have in their lives. Leaving for a weekend for these kids is not a time to unplug but rather filled with negative and sometimes hurtful times. For some, this will be two days that they won’t have a warm building to be in or food to eat.
I recently saw this tweet by Dr. Justin Tarte (@justintarte) that really had me thinking more about the reality of what some of our kids go home to every night.
 
Not all of your students are as excited about Friday as you are. Make each moment count today as they could mean much more than you think.

I saw this image on Dan Rockwell’s blog today and it really made me think about what I have been talking with kids about all along. “Failure is just rehearsal for success”.

That is the reality in life. There are things we are successful right off the bat with, then there are some things that require lots of practice. Famous NBA basketball icon Michael Jordan once said:

“Obstacles don’t have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don’t turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it.”

As educators, we are the children’s coaches in the classroom. It is our responsibility to help them figure out away around the obstacles they are facing. We cannot stand idly by and watch them stumble into the madness of never ending failure. Blaming demographics for the lack of student success is a simple way to give up. When kids see adults give up we send the message that it is OK for them to give up as well.

Remember to teach your kids that failing and learning from mistakes is part of life. How they deal with those mistakes and own them, will make them better citizens.

This is an excellent idea.  I am so going to spend some time over the summer and plan a couple of lessons like this.  Great idea.

 

I was recently reading on Leadershipfreak.com about three types of people you should surround yourself with as a leader. 

The post was very interesting. Starting out with the statement "The enemy of success is isolation."  Now, this for sure applies to leaders but how about teachers in the classroom?  Most teachers are in isolation. Rarely do they leave their room and they stay there most of their career. 
Are these teachers unsuccessful?  I do not believe that they are totally but as cliche as it sounds, it does take a village to raise a child. Teachers need to be getting out of their rooms as much as they can in order to network with other teachers from other disciplines. In order to be successful in the classroom, we must network together learning from one another. 

Pearltrees is a free, visual and collaborative library that lets you keep everything you like at your fingertips. Its unique interface lets you organize and retrieve your favorite web pages, photos, and notes -- even offline. You can also leverage Pearltrees' community members to discover amazing stuff related directly to your interests. Enrich your account with those you like best. With Pearltrees, you can cultivate your interests wherever you are.


My View
I have spent some time and gone through this application.  This application reminds me a little bit like Pinterest.  This can collect all things you find interesting on the internet.  It allows you to organize them into "pearls" that stack like a mind map.  Students can use this tool to create online portfolios.  They can upload files as well as type text or bookmark websites.  Their ideas can be organized in any way they see fit.

The price is right for this app.  Free.  There are paid plans that give you more options but you get plenty for free.