Letter From The Principal: What Do They Really Know?

Parkway Northeast Middle School Principal Dr. Kim Brandon's weekly letter to the school community.

On Friday, I shared the following quote with my staff: “To be able to teach my students well, I need to know them well.” This quote is taken from the second chapter of the book So What Do They Really Know? Assessment That Informs Teaching and Learning by Chris Tovani, a reading specialist, English teacher, and nationally known consultant who focuses on the issues of reading and content comprehension.

Last Wednesday, at our Buffalo Wild Wings spirit bracket challenge, I had the privilege of observing and interacting with several students and their families. They opened a small window into their personal lives, and in doing so, I gained new insight into the values of these students—and their families.

Some of the values I observed were those of family, faith, humor, and competition.

Whether it is Outdoor School, an evening performance, an after-school club, a sporting event, or dinner at Buffalo Wild Wings for the spirit bracket challenge, it is opportunities like these that allow us, the staff of Northeast, to continue to learn more and more about the students with whom we work each day.

Jo Tinnitus, a superintendent from Bowling Green, Kentucky, has this to say about connecting with our students: “If you’re going to teach someone how to read or write, or do math, the odds that they’ll be successful increase greatly if you know them on a personal level.”

Although the year is moving quickly, the staff of Northeast and I look forward to many more opportunities to connecting with your child and getting to know what he/she values.

Have a wonderful week!

And . . . I hope to see all of you at the next round of the Buffalo Wild Wings Spirit Bracket Challenge on February 29, 2012!


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