The Thoughtful Classroom

I’m at Thoughtful Classroom in Salamanca,┬álearning with David Smith, our Middle School Principal, and three terrific teachers, Lois Piscitelli, Andrea Geist, and Kris Ruzycki. We are learning from Harvey Silver and Susan Morris and it is an incredible learning opportunity for me, providing a framework about many of the things I’ve known for seventeen years in education and other things that I haven’t ever heard before. One of the best parts is that Harvey and Susan are modeling all of the best strategies with us–we’re learning about learning in a practical, meaningful way.

Teachers are learning about creating thoughtful classrooms and I’m constantly translating that to my role in creating thoughtful schools in a thoughtful district. What more important goal could I have as assistant superintendent? What better gain could our district garner from this new administrative position?

This is different from other professional development opportunities I’ve been involved in because we five have agreed to embark on three years of sustained learning, experimenting and sharing. We are learning strategies for engagement, making students the center of our learning. I keep following two perspectives: one as a teacher and one as an administrator. I don’t think that’s a bad thing because as an administrator I should definitely do a better job of planning meetings with teachers as learners, remembering that they need the same things that our kids need.

I’m totally stoked about the opportunities I have before me as an assistant superintendent. If I had to choose a theme for my leadership I would steal the idea presented by Harvey and Susan regarding meaningful professional development of “Teachers Talking to Teachers About Teaching”. I love that I can really focus on learning, creating a climate and culture K-12 where we all share our ideas and learning with one another, visiting each other’s classrooms and talking about our strengths, our best ideas, and brainstorming. I’m excited about this shift and my part in it.

I would love to take care of the first year teacher training. I think it should be all about this Thoughtful Classroom learning, including responsibility for teaching strategies at the sessions with the mentors and the new teachers. And extending this for the next two years, focusing on learning with our probationary teachers. Thoughtful Classroom with Harvey and Susan includes sustained learning for our five and building learning clubs beyond our five to other teachers. I’m just thinking I’ll have the ability and the responsibility to take it beyond to other teachers. Can’t imagine that there’s anything more important for new teachers than what I’m learning right here, right now.

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  1. Dear Kimberly Moritz,

    Very interesting!! Will you please explain the details about the training programme?

    Iam interested to know more about Havrvey silver.

    Have a nice time,
    bye for now,

  2. I’ve had the opportunity to hear Harvey Silver speak on several occasions, and he is one of my favorite educational experts. I’d love to hear more about what you plan for entry-year teachers using the ideas you gain from the Thoughtful Classroom training.

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