Monday, August 11, 2014

See the Possibilites

We have a sign in our house that says simply,  "See the possibilities".  It's something that I have always tried to do:  tor example, being able to see the potential left in an old piece of furniture.  Or what could happen if we just tried doing something a little differently.  The potential of a child...  See the possibilities.

Today, I had that reaffirmed in a multitude of ways.  Our PBIS team met this afternoon to work on our rollout and fine tune all of the different pieces that go into such an endeavor.  I tell you, that team of educators was on fire!  The laughter, camaraderie,  ideas.... it was just happening in that room.  Some tasks we did as a group, others we broke down into smaller tasks that could be handled by two team members.  We were able to cross off so many items that were on that To Do list- in part because of their enthusiaam, but mostly because of the trust that they have built among themselves during this last year of learning and planning together.  That is huge.  And it was an honor to be a part of that experience today.  They are seeing the possibilities in teamwork and collaboration.

Tomorrow and Wednesday are our district's student registration days.  It's a lot of work for the district's secretaries and I appreciate all that they do to assist our families with this.  But tonight, I am feeling even more grateful, because this year, they are trying something new, something different.  Rather than hold registration in each of the buildings, as it has been done in the past, they are all coming together in one location. One stop registration, so to speak.  It would have been easier for them to stick with the old way, the safe and comfortable way- but because doing it in this one location could be more convenient for our famiiles, they are willing to try it.  They've been meeting and planning, getting everything in place to make the entire process better for everyone.  They are seeing the possibilites in a new approach.

Grade level teams have been having  Back to School shopping outings- taking their new team members off to go shopping, helping them determi ne exactly what they need to buy and avoid what might seem like a "Must Have" but will prove to have been a waste of precious funds.  In the process, I have heard of lunches out, lots of laughter, and new staff expressing how glad they are that they are joining the Winskill Team.  They are seeing the possibilities in one another.

I have been honored to listen as staff members have stopped in to share the learning that they have been involved with this summer and upcoming months.  Classes on English Language Learners, the Daily 5, Educator Effectiveness, math instruction, technology, autism,  Donalyn Miller's October workshop...  our staff seeing the possibilites in themselves.

We have more staff than ever before blogging. Thanks to the encouragement and modeling of one of our new staff members, Margaret Bussan,  two new blogs have been created and I have no doubt that more are to follow.  I would share that Margaret commented at her interview, "I checked out your blog, and you need to write more."  (very respectful tone, I might add)  And so here I am- writing again.  Youcan check out her blog, Running Through 4th Grade at   Jim Addison's new blog, Black and Green and Everything In Between can be found at  and finally, second grade teacher, Missy Sperle is jumping into blogging with Sights and Sounds from Second Grade at .  We are all seeing the possibilities in the power of the written word and what we have to share with the world.

Change is inevitable, it is true, but the educators that I am honored to work with see those changes as possibilities.

There is an excitement and energy in our school right now. You cannot fake it, nor force it.  As the lead learnier, I can only support and and model and sometimes, just get out of their way!  Because I see the possibilities....


  1. Leah,
    I'm glad you are writing again! As I read your post I could feel your excitement in the entire building. I think it is wonderful that so much willingness to try new things is occurring. That speaks to the culture! Your post had an overwhelming feeling of positivity. I'm a believer that attitudes are contagious, it really seems as though the staff is energized and excited for the possibilities of a great year! Thanks for sharing! -Ben

  2. Leah,
    I know and love the feeling you describe, and it makes the hard work worth it! I have read everyone if your teachers blogs, and I will continue to do so; ill comment too. I'm proud of the work happening in your school, and I'm glad I live so close because the feelings you describe are real, and I feel them too!