A New LYS Principal Asks… Fundamental 5 Targets

A New LYS Principal asks the following: SC,  Attached you will find our PowerWalks data. We will significantly improve the number of walk-thru’s we will perform for the remainder of the year as I purchased an iPad2 for each of our assistant principals (they love the PowerWalks system). I am also breaking down each of…

Top LYS Tweets From the Week of May 6, 2012

Recently, I was talking with some school leaders and our conversation turned to bootleg technology.  The concern of the group was that many teachers seemed to be missing the point. The point being that bootleg technology isn’t there as a substitute for something we already do, it should be used to enhance and supplement classroom…

A Reader Writes… PLC Focus – Part 1

In response to the 3/28/2012 post, “A Principal Asks… PLC Focus,” and old school LYS’er sent the following note: SC, This post now hangs in our conference room. SC Response I’m glad you and your team found the post useful.  In case any readers missed it, here is the executive summary of the post. To…

A Principal Shares… The Power of the Fundamental 5

In response to the 3/7/2012 post, “State of the Blog – The Last 100 Posts (1,000 and Counting),” a reader shares: SC, The LYS blog has been a great companion and source for strength when bringing change to my middle school campus. In the Fall semester, we completed a campus book study of the “Fundamental…

Top LYS Tweets From the Week of April 29, 2012

Last week (Tuesday, May 1, 2012), I wrote about making the month of May count.  I listed four examples of things that schools could do during May to keep students engaged and instruction meaningful.  But I saved example number five for today’s post.  Make May your bootleg technology beta-testing month. This is your chance to…

PowerWalks Hero Schools (April 2012)

As is now a LYS Nation tradition, we will take time to tip our caps to the campuses that are taking the most important step in creating and maintaining an action oriented professional learning community.  These are the campuses that have conducted an extraordinary number of formative classroom observations in a given month.  Due to…

A Reader Asks… So What’s My Number?

A LYS Principal asks: SC, I keep hearing all these numbers about the number of walk-thru’s I should do? Instead of having yet another person who has never done a walk-thru tell me some number she pulled out of thin air, a figured I might as well ask a real expert. SC Response “Expert” may…

NASSP Conference Ratings – The Fundamental 5

Last week, NASSP sent me the audience feedback from our standing room only presentation of “The Fundamental 5”. This was unexpected since most conferences don’t do this. After our presentations, the participants always warmly receive us, but we are educators presenting to educators, which means that the audience would be polite even if we didn’t…

PowerWalks Hero Schools (March 2012)

As is now a LYS Nation tradition, we will take time to tip our caps to the campuses that are taking the most important step in creating and maintaining an action oriented professional learning community. These are the campuses that have conducted an extraordinary number of formative classroom observations in a given month. Due to…

Top LYS Tweets from the Week of March 25, 2012

More schools are considering the move to e-readers over textbooks. The benefits are many. Less weight, less cost, convenience, just to name a few. But I have been trying to come up with a reason why this shift would not be a good idea. And then it hit me. With an e-book you can’t highlight…

A New Principal Asks… Student Apathy

A new LYS Principal who recently took over the helm of a school asks the following: SC, What are your thoughts on student apathy and what is your solution? SC Response I’m going to give you the short answer and then a longer answer. First the short answer. Adult practice drives student performance. If you…

A Principal Asks… PLC Focus

A LYS Principal asks,SC,I’m getting a lot of pressure to implement PLC’s on my campus. My teachers are already busting their tails so I am loath to add more to their plates. What do you suggest?SC Response Just because you call your regular meetings a PLC, doesn’t magically make them an effective use of time…

A Principal Shares… The Best Observation Data Ever!

A LYS Principal shared the following with her LYS Coach:LC,This is a note a teacher received last week. This teacher’s personal goal was to improve her Recognize and Reinforce (see: Fundamental 5) frequency level. Looks like it’s working!SC ResponseThis note illustrates a key LYS coaching point; the change in our (adult) practice drives the change…

PowerWalks – PDAS Alignment

There is a push by many in our field who want to combine teacher coaching and evaluation instruments. At best these people are misguided or inexperienced, at worst they are idiots. I don’t write this to offend, it just the recognition that in this case, I have considerable expertise. Coaching is for skill building and…

Foundation Trinity – PDAS Alignment

Here is the next LYS coaching alignment tool. Over the next few posts I will show the alignment between LYS doctrine and state requirements. Now up, the alignment of the Foundation Trinity to the Texas PDAS. When we implement our Common Scope and Sequence, there is a positive impact on the following PDAS domains: Domain…

Fundamental 5 – PDAS Alignment

Recently we have had a host of non-LYS leaders taking over for LYSers who have been either promoted or have moved on to bigger campuses or districts. It is the bane of success. The school improves and new opportunities present themselves. The downside is that you have the remaining LYSers trying to get the new…

PowerWalks 101

PowerWalks are different than typical classroom observation practice. PowerWalks are about providing teachers with game film, incremental improvement and leveraging professional insight. So how is this done? Using the right tool (if you are not using PowerWalks, sorry), frequency and reflection. If you are a campus administrator, keep the following numbers in mind when considering…

What Are You Doing For Crunch Time?

Over the past couple of weeks I have been meeting with Principals to address their action plans as they lead their campuses into crunch time before the administration of state accountability tests. Here is the summary of those conversations. 1. Administration must actively participate in instructional planning session with teachers. 2. Address critical and deficient…

A LYS Principal Submits… A Waste of Instructional Time

A frustrated LYS Principal submits the following: One of the many things I learned from E. Don Brown is that there is a simple litmus test for every decision you make as an instructional leader. If it’s good for adults, look carefully, because it is probably bad for kids. As you know, last week, classroom…

Free School Improvement Tool

If there is a silver bullet for improving the quality of instructional delivery on a campus, it is the use of frequent objective classroom observation and coaching discussions. Lead Your School’s new PowerWalks Lite app is a great tool to use if your campus is new to this practice. Go to the Apple App store…

A LYS Principal Shares… The Unexpected Side Effect!

A LYS Principal shares the following: SC, I just finished reviewing campus discipline data. Our campus discipline referrals have dropped 43% from Fall Semester 2010 to Fall Semester 2011. The major instructional difference… Power Zone (and the initial attempts at the rest of the Fundamental 5). Thanks! SC Response We all know that when we…

A LYS Principal Shares… Semester Targets

A LYS Principal shares her campus goals for the Spring semester. LC, On January 2, our grade level teams met and set team goals. Without getting into specifics of baseline data and measurements, their goals are as follows: Kindergarten: We will plan a critical writing/thinking product in one subject area three times a week. 1st…

Top LYS Tweets from the Week of January 15, 2012

I was talking to a group of teachers about using bootleg technology in their classrooms. As a group they were open to idea but there was one universal factor that was holding them back. They were waiting for the district to buy the equipment. The consensus opinion was, “I can’t wait to integrate all this…

A Reader Shares… More Accolades in the LYS Nation

A long time reader shares, SC, As a believer in the LYS Nation and faithful reader of your daily blog/post, I wanted to submit some information on our middle school here at Tom Bean ISD. As you well know, Tom Bean Middle School Principal, Dewitt Smith, is a huge follower and LYS administrator. Last week…

A LYS Principal Shares… The Effect of the Fundamental 5

A LYS Principal sent the following: SC, I wanted to share a few comments with you. We started the new semester reviewing Fundamental 5 data, both campus and individual. We also discussed our Fundamental 5 coaching initiative for this semester. As we finished the staff development session, my Band Director came up to me with…

LYS Principals Write… So What is Your Scheduling Alternative – Part 1

In response to the 11/29/11 post, “So What is Your Scheduling Alternative,” LYS Principals are asking: SC, I would like to know more about the trimester schedule. And Where can I find more information on scheduling? SC Response Here are some critical facts you should know about trimesters and other schedules. 1. The eight period…

A Reader Writes… Thanks for the Meeting

An Old School LYS’er writes: SC, Thanks again for taking the time to listen and share your observations with me. It remains exciting to hear about what is really best for teachers and students. Thanks for all you and the LYS crew do to make sure that none are left without the best opportunity to…

Top LYS Tweets from the Week of December 18, 2011

And we’re back. Happy New Year’s to all and I hope that you had a safe and restful holiday. In regards to bootleg technology I often get the question, “Where should we start?” Let you people try their bootleg technology at a personal level, first. And this is the best time of the year do…

A LYS Principal Submits… The Importance of the Power Zone

LYS Principal submits the following: SC, I just had an experience that has convinced me that there is no more important instructional practice than Working in the Power Zone. One of my teachers brought a student to my office to complete his work. He had made some poor choices in class. The teacher gave him…

A LYS (and Game On!) Principal Shares… The Cleaning Fairy

A LYS Principal shares a team memo from her Game On! campus. If you are new to the blog, the Game On! campuses are LYSers on steroids. Their performance is legendary. Now the memo: The Cleaning Fairy made a few stops this weekend! I know you LOVE it when she comes for a visit 🙂…
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