Friday, August 22, 2014

Time to Change the World

Concluding the first week of school I find myself reflecting on all that has been accomplished in such a short period of time, 4 days to be exact. Think about it, we just went from full summer mode of sleeping in and lazy days, to having hundreds, in my case 903 7th and 8th graders, back within the school in front of teachers and with their classmates as they begin the academic journey of a lifetime.

Already we have:
  • Created the foundational climate for the year.
  • Established academic expectations that will take us through the next many months.
  • Fostered relationships with colleagues to support our instruction.
  • Introduced complete strangers to each other and encouraged them to become more than classmates, to become friends.
  • Introduced content that is as foreign to them as the day is new.
  • Brought technology into their experience of learning that is beyond being "social".
  • Tossed all of these students, and teachers, into one building and asked them to be "one" and to get along, "play nice" and learn from each other.
And with that, all of these listed and many more, we have created a new year. Whether with our teachers, our parents and most importantly our students, we have the start of something great, something awesome, something inspiring.

I was told to dream this year. I was told to encourage others to do the same. My role and responsibility is to empower others to take risks that would be for uncomfortable, yet rewarding. I will do just that. I will guide, support and listen.

This first week I have been moved by what I have seen. I see an audacious approach to the year ahead. There is conviction, there is determination. Teachers are walking with passion in their step. The students can already see it. We can already feel it. This is our year. This is only the first week of school. There is amazement everywhere. Can you see it where you are? I can. Therefore I can say with conviction, after these first four days, we are ready to change the world.


  1. Craig, I love the passion and determination of this post. Since I'm not back at school yet, I feel eager to return when I see what you're already doing. Thanks for sharing your encouragement. I plan to do the same!

  2. Craig... love this. We start next week... wish me luck!

    1. Good luck! Go change the world, one moment at a time! Keep up the great work with your community. They deserve all you have to offer!

  3. Craig, this was so awesome to read! We start back up with our MS kids on September 3. I couldn't wait before, and now, after reading this, I'm even more pumped up! Your posts are always so charged with positive energy - something every middle school community needs, deserves, and thrives on. Thanks for always doing that for me, with your words and your actions.


  4. All but 2 of your points have to do with social and relationships!! I love this! With you at the helm, you all WILL probably change the world! Glad you are off to a great start - thanks for the inspiration!

  5. This post has me all jazzed up about next week (teachers return 8/27 and kids 9/3). I hope I can be part of the energy you have inspired here in my school. Thank you for always giving me something to aspire to.

  6. Craig,
    It is amazing to think of all we have accomplished. For the first time this year, I do not have my own classroom. This has been quite an adjustment for me and my kind colleagues have helped ease the pain by allowing me to slip in and out of their classrooms. I wish they could see what I have seen. The way each one of them is slowly shaping their communities. Though 25 or more students are gathered, I've seen them work to connect and help students know they are valued. Their message is clear, "Give it a try. We'll learn together." The change in four days is pronounced. Slowly I see children inching out from their shells. I see hands reaching for other hands. I listen to students sharing their stories with one another. I'm continually inspired. Great days are ahead.

    Enjoy your year,


    1. Thanks Cathy! Hats off to a great year ahead! May each day you leave a message with your students that carries throughout the year. What a great opportunity we have each day to work with our students!
      Enjoy the days ahead!

  7. I agree Craig! I can feel the PASSION and EXCITEMENT each day just oozing from the classrooms! Let's keep this energy and spirit alive with uplifting articles/blogs just as this one. Thanks!