Sunday, September 25, 2016

The Leader in Who?

We are learners at Curtis Elementary.  As the lead learner, I am constantly learning new ways  to support teachers so that as a team, we provide quality instruction for students.  We also look for ways to build capacity for teacher leaders.  Even though I am the principal, I continually learn from teacher leaders.    The teachers are experts in the content.  One of our value statements at Curtis and in WISD is to "Demonstrate Visionary Leadership."  Teachers at Curtis take on all sorts of roles showing their leadership each day.  One of the ways they "Demonstrate Visionary Leadership" is with through Tech Tuesdays. On Tuesdays after school teachers choose a new digital learning strategy or tools. Teachers demonstrate how to use digital tools in the classroom to increase engagement. The great thing about Tech Tuesday is that no one twists their arms to either share or learn about a new tool. Teachers choose to either lead or learn!

While we have leaders within our adults, the most important part of what we strive to do at Curtis is to raise student leaders.  We have many avenues for students to learn about leadership.  Our Student Leadership team is consisted of three students from each grade level.   The team meets the first Friday of each month to learn about leadership.  The Student Leadership team's core responsibility is to help with school improvement.  Last year the team designed learning spaces in our building.  We were able to outfit our landings with sports themed furniture, TV monitors and whiteboards so that students and teachers have cool learning spaces to collaborate and learn from each other.   Learning does not only take place in the classroom.  Sixth graders are leaders also!  The sixth graders lead through Student Council.  They fund raise and work toward helping the school as well.  They look for ways to support the community and improve our school through various committees.

Chloe Whitehead, a Curtis Student Leader, is also a Student Ambassador at Region XI!
Choloe on right with Curtis teachers!
Ms. Rogers, Mrs. Mask, and Mrs. Gibson
 She started raising money to buy Chromebooks for other students at Curtis!  This is an example of  raising student leaders at Curtis!

We also "Demonstrate Visionary Leadership" through our school -wide "Leader in Me" program.  Each month, I read a book that focuses on one of the seven habits a leadership to the staff.  We will participate in activities that outline that particular habit.  Teachers will then take this book back to the classroom so that they can teach students about leadership.  Student work that is centered around these habits of leadership is posted all around the building.  Students and staff members can talk about the leadership habit and provide feedback related to this work that is displayed.  Raising student leaders to understand what it takes to be a leader and the habits of great leaders is important to developing the whole child so that they not only help them be prepared for the world but to also see how they can positively impact the world!

Student Leaders help present at the WISD Board Meeting.

Check out our Third Grade Leaders!

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