Thanksgiving Week Ahead, November 23-24
"What do you really wish that I knew or understood?"
Faculty, as announced, there will be no formal meeting on Monday, but support and clarification will be available after school for finishing your Infinite Campus reporting for quarter 1.
Week Ahead, November 13-17
Week Ahead, November 6-9
End of Quarter 1 Week Ahead, October 30-November 3
Week Ahead, October 23-27
Week Ahead, October 16-20
Week Ahead, October 10-13
I hope everyone enjoyed the extra long weekend. Even if the weather wasn't as pleasant as was originally felt forecast, I definitely felt a decrease in stress.
Last week I asked about how we should talk to students about stress, and empower them to overcome it. One key factor in any answer we develop is how we understand--how WELL we understand--how the teenage brain works.
Perhaps the most common lament among the school- and home-based adults who work with teenagers is that "they just don't think ahead." This observation is, sadly, true--it is also, unfortunately, not really within the control of the teenagers in question.
For all their ability to hold intelligent, reasonable conversations with us, and sometimes to backtalk us in ways that we wish they wouldn't, there's plenty of science to say that, developmentally, the teenage brain is actually not fully formed in the regions that would allow them to consider things like long-term consequences.
This reality about adolescent brain development has major implications for schooling and school policy, as this commentary notes. I have spoken often in these messages about the research regarding school start time, but the realities of teenage brains call into question many other aspects of our high school program.
What would high school look like if we designed it to match what we know about how teenage brains develop? How well are we doing at teaching students how their brains work, how to set goals, how to self-reflect? How are we honoring the emotional development of students' brains and supporting what needs to happen to grow their executive functioning capacity?
Perhaps we start this week, by asking--what have you accomplished so far this year? What are your goals for the next month?
Here's the schedule:
No faculty meeting this week; faculty council meets next Monday.
Have a great week.
A. Erik GoodPrincipal
Week ahead, october 2-5
Homecoming Week Ahead, September 25-29
As we continue forward with developing our Proficiency Based Diploma practices at LRHS, an ongoing focus has been our work in developing "student agency"--the skills, habits, and mindsets that students are responsible for their own learning and able to manage it independently for the rest of their lives.
Developing this independence is arguably our most important task as an educational institution--the greatest marker of whether we have been successful with our students or not. The challenge of that--as this article (thanks to Roger Smith for sharing something he is using in Psychology!) discusses--is that what we mean by independence is in many ways culturally and contextually determined.
For example--I know many parents have communicated to me that they don't want their student present in conversations about the student's academic progress, for various reasons. There are certainly conditions and situations where not including a high school student in a discussion of his or her progress might be appropriate, but it is certainly not a strategy that promotes the student's independence or agency.
A "slower" growing up process should inform our efforts to develop student agency, and may actually cause us to pull back on some efforts, but the overall question is the one implied by the article--How do we make sure that teens eventually get the opportunity to develop the skills they will need as adults: independence, along with social and decision-making skills?
It is Homecoming week, with tons of activities scheduled throughout.
Some of the particulars follow.
Dress up days:Monday 9/25 'Merica Day (red,white,blue)
Tuesday 9/26 - Tourist Day
Wednesday 9/27 - PJ Day
Thursday 9/28 - Trick or Treat Day (must be able to see face)
Friday 9/29 - Blue & Gold Day
Other Events:Parade is Thursday 9/28 at 6:30 at Highland Lake Beach to Stevens Brook Elementary with bonfire at 7:00 and back to high school for gym decorating until 10:30 PM
Pep Rally will be Friday at 12:50 in the gym
Dance is Saturday, September 30 from 7 - 10 PMT
Faculty Council will meet from 2:15 to 3:30, to hammer out action steps for the initiatives listed on the Vision and Growth Plan.
It will be a busy and fun week--everyone, have a great one!
A. Erik Good
Lake Region High School