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"The best approaches to engaging challenging students is to develop their intrinsic motivation."

"The best approaches to engaging challenging students is to develop their intrinsic motivation." | Leading Schools | Scoop.it

"In my nine years of teaching high school, I've found that one of the best approaches to engaging challenging students is to develop their intrinsic motivation.

The root of intrinsic is the Latin intrinsecus, a combination of two words meaning within and alongside. It's likely that our students are intrinsically motivated—just motivated to follow their own interests, not to do what we want them to do. Teachers' challenge is to work alongside our students, to know their interests and goals, and to develop trusting relationships that help students connect their learning to their goals in a way that motivates from within."

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Leading Schools
Improving Schools Through Enhanced Leadership
Curated by Mel Riddile
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Leading Success: Dynamic Solutions for Every School, Each Student

Leading Success: Dynamic Solutions for Every School, Each Student | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
Our toolkit for educators includes videos, case studies and more that lead you to a forum for equity, personalization, smart data, collaboration and continuous improvement...
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Nancy J. Herr's curator insight, July 3, 2014 9:53 AM

NASSP sponsored tools for success. Take a look at the many resources for new and experienced leaders alike.

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Lead Learner or Instructional Leader? Does It Matter?

Lead Learner or Instructional Leader? Does It Matter? | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
There seems to be some debate by principals who believe lead learner should be used instead of instructional leader. What does it matter? A lot...if you're one of their teachers.


When studying leadership, Hattie's research showed that leadership has an effect size of .39, which is directly under the "Hinge Point" of .40. However, when using moderators it showed that transformational leadership has an effect size of .11 and instructional leadership has an effect size of .42. Lead learning was not found or discussed in the research.

According to Robinson, Lloyd, and Rowe (2008) the effects were strongest on:

  • Promoting and participating in teacher learning and development (.84)
  • Establishing goals and expectations (.42)
  • Planning, coordinating, and evaluating teaching and the curriculum (.42)
  • Aligning resource selection and allocation to priority teaching goals (.31)
  • Ensuring an orderly and supportive environment (.27)

Whether it is called "Lead Learning" or "Instructional Leadership" doesn't matter as much as the impact it all has on the learning that students and teachers do in school and outside of the school walls. Hattie asks to "Know Thy Impact" and I think that sometimes leaders think they have a larger impact than they really do. Over 80% of teachers in a random sample believe that their leaders do not want their involvement in one of the most important structures that we have in our schools, which is our faculty meetings. And they don't believe their faculty meetings mirror professional development sessions.

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How the Heck Do You Implement “Student Empowerment”?

How the Heck Do You Implement “Student Empowerment”? | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
Most classrooms follow a prescribed formula. Teachers plan and lay out what is going to be learned. Students come into class and have the responsibility of switching themselves into “ready” mode, waiting for the teacher to instruct and guide them in the day’s tasks. Surely there are parts of the learning process where the control could be shifted to the students – where teachers can hand them responsibility and freedom and give them a voice in what they would learn.
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Most New Yorkers say exam results should be used to rate teachers: poll

Most New Yorkers say exam results should be used to rate teachers: poll | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
Two-thirds of New Yorkers say student results on Common Core exams should be used to rate teachers, according to a poll released Monday. Of the 67 percent of voters who support linking test results...
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Teacher Engagement: Master the 5 Elements

Teacher Engagement: Master the 5 Elements | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
Employee Engagement is one of the most important things for any organization's success. You can dramatically improve it by mastering these 5 elements:
Mel Riddile's insight:

Written for business, but directly applicable to schools,


While schools are NOT businesses, schools are organizations.

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Vocabulary: Researchers Look to Identify 'Priority' Words for All Subjects

Vocabulary: Researchers Look to Identify 'Priority' Words for All Subjects | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
A new research initiative aims to find the most critical vocabulary needed for reading, mathematics, science, and social studies.
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When Should a State Consider a School Officially "Turned Around"?

When Should a State Consider a School Officially "Turned Around"? | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
Under NCLB waivers, states have to identify 5 percent of their lowest performing schools for major interventions. But that hasn't always gone super smoothly
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How school reform stacks up against Grade 5 Common Core test standards. (Hint: not well.)

How school reform stacks up against Grade 5 Common Core test standards. (Hint: not well.) | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
'The Grade 5 Math Test is used to “assess student reasoning.” Unfortunately, the latest legislation in Albany does not pass the reasonable test.'
Mel Riddile's insight:

NASSP has cautionned states re the use of VAM in teacher and principal evaluations.


"many academics have expressed serious doubts about the type of statistical procedures the state utilizes to link test scores to teacher rankings. The American Statistical Association (ASA), whose mission is to promote “sound statistical practice to improve public policy,” has cautioned that “ranking teachers by their VAM (Value-Added Model) scores can have unintended consequences that reduce quality” and that “large standard errors make rankings unstable.” Furthermore, the ASA asserted “the lack of consistency among various methods using the same data alone raises concerns about the application of VAMs for high stakes decisions.” Yet Albany has upped the ante on high stakes testing, making it an overriding factor in the teacher evaluation process."

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A Framework for Schools to Work with Families: Partners not "people who need saving"

A Framework for Schools to Work with Families: Partners not "people who need saving" | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
Karen Mapp, keynote speaker at the Children's Institute's annual luncheon, says, "If you're not including your families in the conversation about student learning, you've missed out on a core ingredient."


Framework For Schools To Work With Families.

The Oregonian (4/26, Wang) reports that Harvard lecturer Karen Mapp spoke at the Children’s Institute’s luncheon Friday and argued that successful schools have to treat families as partners rather than clients, supplements, or, in the words of the paper, “people who need saving.” She adds that working with families takes more time and energy but leads to better results. Along with the ED, Mapp has created a framework for working with families, which includes families understanding what their children are learning, building relationships between teachers and parents, and making families feel like they are real partners in the process.

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Why you don't have to know all the answers

Why you don't have to know all the answers | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
by Stephen Logan
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Kelly Christopherson's curator insight, April 27, 12:57 AM

This is something that more leaders, especially in education, need to embrace and model not just talk about as a good idea.

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21 Components of Effective Feedback

21 Components of Effective Feedback | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
The 21 Components of Effective Feedback Infographic will help managers develop a comprehensive understanding of what constitutes effective feedback.
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Vocabulary: Key Is Quality of Conversation, Not Number of Words

Vocabulary: Key Is Quality of Conversation, Not Number of Words | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
A seminal study on the early word gap between the children of college graduates and high school dropouts has led to more nuanced findings about language development.
Mel Riddile's insight:
  • The researchers found that, on average, children from professional families heard more than 2,150 words an hour. Those in working-class families heard about 1,250 words. Children in families on welfare heard little more than 600 words an hour.
  • "It's not just the word gap; it's what you use language for," said Barbara T. Bowman, a child-development professor and co-founder of the Chicago-based Erikson Institute.
  • Children of professionals also heard twice as many unique words, and twice as many "encouraging" versus "discouraging" conversations ("What did you think of that?" versus "Don't touch that," for example.) By the end of the study, more than 85 percent of the vocabulary, conversational patterns, and language complexity of the 3-year-olds had come from their families, and children of professionals had vocabularies more than twice as large as peers in families receiving welfare.
  • children with an "enriched language environment" hear about 20,000 words a day—22 million words by age 3—while disadvantaged children hear half as many or fewer.
  • But if recent studies shrunk the word gap from the Hart and Risley study, they also magnified the importance of parent-child conversations.
  • "Conversational turns are vastly more important than the number of words a child is exposed to," Ms. Gilkerson said.
Note to teachers: Purposeful classroom discussion is critical to acquisition of vocabulary.
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Lynnette Van Dyke's curator insight, April 24, 1:01 PM
Mel Riddile's insight:The researchers found that, on average, children from professional families heard more than 2,150 words an hour. Those in working-class families heard about 1,250 words. Children in families on welfare heard little more than 600 words an hour."It's not just the word gap; it's what you use language for," said Barbara T. Bowman, a child-development professor and co-founder of the Chicago-based Erikson Institute.Children of professionals also heard twice as many unique words, and twice as many "encouraging" versus "discouraging" conversations ("What did you think of that?" versus "Don't touch that," for example.) By the end of the study, more than 85 percent of the vocabulary, conversational patterns, and language complexity of the 3-year-olds had come from their families, and children of professionals had vocabularies more than twice as large as peers in families receiving welfare.children with an "enriched language environment" hear about 20,000 words a day—22 million words by age 3—while disadvantaged children hear half as many or fewer.But if recent studies shrunk the word gap from the Hart and Risley study, they also magnified the importance of parent-child conversations."Conversational turns are vastly more important than the number of words a child is exposed to," Ms. Gilkerson said. Note to teachers: Purposeful classroom discussion is critical to acquisition of vocabulary.
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5 Keys to Reducing High School Dropout Rate: Study

5 Keys to Reducing High School Dropout Rate: Study | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
The Rennie Center presents a case study on how Boston cut its high school dropout rate in half from 2004 to 2014.


five key strategies that helped drive change:

1. All participants had a common understanding of the problem and shared vision for change;

2. There was agreement on how to measure results, and data was used to hold all parties accountable;

3. While activities to address the issue were diverse, the work was coordinated;

4. Continuous communication between partners built trust and motivated engagement;

5. And an intermediary organization provided staff devoted to supporting the initiative.

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Teacher Evaluation: Grant Wiggins says 'Drive Out Fear'

Teacher Evaluation: Grant Wiggins says 'Drive Out Fear' | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
Dear Governor Cuomo: I have my whole professional educational life been a supporter of teacher accountability. And, as you may know, I sided publicly with the findings in your recent report on the ...
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Willingham - Can reading comprehension be taught?

Willingham - Can reading comprehension be taught? | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
The answer, from a cognitive scientist, may surprise you.


"Gail Lovette and I (2014) found three quantitative reviews of RCS instruction in typically developing children and five reviews of studies of at-risk children or those with reading disabilities. All eight reviews reported that RCS instruction boosted reading comprehension, but NONE reported that practice of such instruction yielded further benefit. The outcome of 10 sessions was the same as the outcome of 50."

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Depression, Weapons May Be More Common for Bullied Teens

Depression, Weapons May Be More Common for Bullied Teens | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
Cyber abuse often causes more damage than face-to-face nastiness, researcher says


Studies Indicate Bullied Students Are More Depressed, Suicidal, And Prone To Carry Weapons Than Peers.

HealthDay (4/28, Preidt) reports that three new studies indicate bullied students are more have depression and suicidal thoughts than their peers and are also more likely to bring weapons to school. US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data shows that depression and thoughts of suicide are “much more common” among teens that are bullied either online or at school, but are even more prevalent that encounter both. All three studies will be presented at the Pediatric Academic Societies annual meeting in San Diego. Sexual violence and bullying were also both associated with students bringing weapons to school.

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Every Handout From NCTM

Some people on Twitter were grousing about the inconvenience of clicking every single session link in the NCTM directory to find out if the speakers uploaded handouts. NCTM also mentioned that the ...
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Top Principals Expand Reach to Multiple Schools

Top Principals Expand Reach to Multiple Schools | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
The Clark County, Nev., and Denver districts are testing a new approach to school leadership, giving successful administrators more than one school to manage.
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Routine: the grease that makes the classroom wheel go round and round

Routine: the grease that makes the classroom wheel go round and round | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
Some weeks there’s no such thing as a “typical” day—and there should be.
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Scores Drop For Black Students, Rise For Others in Study of Expanded Reading Class

Scores Drop For Black Students, Rise For Others in Study of Expanded Reading Class | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
Black students lost ground in reading while their white, Asian, and Latino classmates improved in a district program to prevent them from slipping during the transition from elementary to middle school.


The study didn't examine the reasons for the differences, but Dougherty said that when he met with district officials, they discussed several possible explanations, including "stereotype threat."

Psychologist Claude Steele, now the provost at the University of California, Berkeley, developed this term based on his research with Joshua Aronson that found minority students may become so anxious to disprove common perceptions about their abilities that it interferes with their work, causing them to do poorly on tests and reinforce the negative stereotypes.

Dougherty said that may be happening to the black students in predominantly white schools who scored close to the 60th percentile on the ITBS, but whose scores fell when they were asked to enroll in the supplemental literacy course.

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Stand Up for Sleep-Deprived Students

Stand Up for Sleep-Deprived Students | Leading Schools | Scoop.it

"Last month, the National Association of School Nurses and the Society of Pediatric Nurses joined the American Academy of Pediatrics in a vital policy recommendationthat middle and high schools start no earlier than 8:30 a.m. to accommodate natural sleep cycles (teens are biologically programmed to stay up later and wake up later). They note that 87 percent of high school students are chronically sleep-deprived, and such regular sleep deprivation is putting our children at greater risk of depression, anxiety and obesity, as well as fatigue-related accidents and injuries. It's also undermining their concentration and performance in school."

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10 Creative Pre-assessment Ideas

10 Creative Pre-assessment Ideas | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
We've learned to pre-assess learners in far more creative ways in recent years. Use these ten approaches to launch great pre-assessment
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The Many Identities of a Learner

The Many Identities of a Learner | Leading Schools | Scoop.it

Annie, who has a new book -- Brilliant: The New Science of Smart -- coming out this year, is one of the few writers who eschews headline-grabbing oversimplifications of the research and focuses on respecting and articulating the evidence. Daniel Willingham, who has carefully debunked the learning styles myth (linked above), is another.

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"Leadership doesn’t make you better than anyone else, it make you more responsible."

"Leadership doesn’t make you better than anyone else, it make you more responsible." | Leading Schools | Scoop.it

Leadership doesn’t make you better than anyone else, it make you more responsible.


  • "As a leader you are more than an individual contributor.
  • Leaders think about the context—the big picture—not just their function. 
  • Focused on the outcome, they do whatever needs to be done to move the organization forward.
  • They do whatever they can to facilitate the work of others.  
  • Leaders are connected to what others are doing. And we can accomplish this be asking, “How can I help you?” And then doing what needs to be done."


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Teacher Engagement Matters

Teacher Engagement Matters | Leading Schools | Scoop.it

While this study relates to business, it does apply directly to principals' efforts to engage teachers in collaborative decision making.


"Engaged companies outperform their competition, Gallup finds.
And when it comes to assessing their workforces' engagement,
those companies measure the right things in the right way."

Collaborative leadership makes a huge difference in a number of key areas of school effectiveness:
  1. Community Perceptions (Customer Loyalty)
  2. Use of Instructional Time (Productivity)
  3. Teacher Turnover
  4. Safety and Student Behavior
  5. Teacher  and Student Absenteeism
  6. Teaching Quality (Product Quality)
  7. Student Achievement (Profitability)
  8. Loss, Theft, Damaged Equipment (Shrinkage)


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