Good Parents are Good Leaders (and Never Underestimate Kids)

For best results with our children, parents need to be good leaders.

One day, Suzanne said to her five-year-old niece Emma, “My, that is a beautiful stuffed lion you have there.”

“I know, I saw it in the store and Mommy bought it for me.”

“That’s nice.”

“Yes. Well, she wasn’t going to.”

“Oh?” asked Aunt Suzanne, who had children of her own.

“No. She wasn’t going to. So I went,” and screwing up her face Emma acted out, “Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!” then said, “She took it off the shelf and bought it for me.”

“Huh,” replied Suzanne, hiding her smile. She was charmed by this window into the workings and self-awareness of this delightful five-year-old brain.

Later that day in the kitchen Suzanne was talking to her sister and started to tell the story Continue reading

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Five Challenges for a Great New School Year

A new school year. Will it be great? Are you looking forward to the challenges? If you are a parent or a teacher I’m jealous. I miss having children around every day. Their absence compromises my education. But maybe you aren’t feeling that way. Continue reading

Posted in Authority, Brain Development, Challenge, Character, Children, Conflict and Issues, decision-making, Education, First Day of School, Genius, Leadership, Learning community, perseverance, Resilience, School Reform, Self-Actualization | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Can Documentation Help Schooling Be an Education?

I never let my schooling interfere with my education.

—Mark Twain

I’d like your opinion on something:  It seems the system in which we teach has changed over my 50 years in education—not for the better—and the big culprit is documentation. Do you agree? What’s your point of view? Continue reading

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Conflict and Character

The development of character is not simply doing the right thing nor is it “doing your own thing” and being “a character.” We develop our character as we actively engage in conflict with other characters.The development of character is not simply doing the right thing nor is it “doing your own thing” and being “a character.” We develop our character as we actively engage in conflict with other characters. Continue reading

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Schoolyard Nastiness and Democracy

I too despair at watching my president stoop to schoolyard nastiness. 

David Leonhardt, New York Times, June 30, 2017

Why do we expect our democracy to function better than our schoolyard? Because we don’t get what should be going on at school. The schoolyard is prime testing ground for how the kids are coming along in their preparation for democracy. What we see in the schoolyard is what we should expect to see in our government. Continue reading

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