Bookcast Episode #2

Bookcast is back and kids are buzzing about the books they're reading. Episode #2 featured some incredible students having authentic conversations about all things literacy. This episode also contained December's Principal Read-Aloud choice and a sneak preview of our school's next "Build-a-Book" LEGO wall title. (We're so inspired by what our students are creating!) Episode #2 Take-Aways: Students explain the term booktalk Students provide practical tips for other "booktalkers" Look for at least 3 ideas to cultivate a culture of literacy

Ugly Sweater Lotto is Back!

Hope is a funny thing. Last year, our school held an "Ugly Sweater Lotto" the day before Winter Break. Each one of the 100+ educators who serve at Greenwood received a holiday ornament with a lucky lotto number stuck to the back. We held drawings throughout the day and announced winners every hour on the hour using our school hashtag on Twitter. (We also posted winning numbers on a bulletin board in the lounge.) Prizes ranged from gift cards and books to art sets and a hot sauce challenge gift box. My personal favorite was "Free Lunch from the Principal" for a week. It was really neat to hear the conversation as people checked their numbers. I still remember one comment like it was yesterday

Diamonds in the Rough

What a year! The latest episode of UnearthED really got us thinking. Take 10 minutes to hear what we saw as some of the “diamonds in the rough” in education, and then share yours! In this episode, Ben shares one idea to take 2018 to a new level of authenticity. I reflect upon something I should’ve learned long ago about student voice. And of course, we pause to acknowledge that even in the craziest of times, there’s always a bright spot. Our hope for you is that you continue to be that light for students, and that you help them create their own. Ben and I appreciate you listening, and helping us try to look at the topics educators face on a deeper level. If you haven’t subscribed to the show

When They Come Back

Recently, a former student named Sofia stopped by Greenwood Elementary to say hi and deliver a special gift. I'll get to that story in a second... There are so many meaningful moments in a day, and working with students is the privilege of a lifetime. However, there is one thing that gets me every time; it's when they come back. When kids come back we get to see who they've become. And who they are becoming. We see how they've grown into the "sparkle" that we once saw in their eyes during elementary school. Personally, hearing former students share specific memories of learning experiences and teachers who impacted their life trajectory is unbelievably inspiring. Now, back to Sofia... This m

Dr. Brad Gustafson is an elementary principal, author, and speaker. He believes schools can be spaces where creativity and innovation thrive, but only when we prioritize relationships and a relevant, connected pedagogy. 


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