@chs_dmurray: Week in Reflection
Are We There, Yet?
“Are we there yet? Are we there yet?” We’re all familiar with those plaintive cries from the kids in the backseat. The end of the school year is a lot like those long car trips...but, wait...we are only starting the fourth quarter! We are stopping at a rest area...or are we?
With the calamity days to start of the fourth quarter, some students feel that it is time to sit in the back seat and wait until they have idled through the finish line. Regardless of what grade that your son/daughter is in, the fourth quarter is the moment to finish...the moment to refine….and the moment to define who they are.
Two decades of teaching and coaching have cemented in my mind the sheer purpose of preparing for beyond the finish line. Many students and athletes look at the endpoint of a year or season as the goal. The reality is that goals are defined well before the year, and season. I wouldn’t prepare for a state title without establishing the backward design model of off-season/pre-season/in-season preparedness. Likewise, school provides us with many finish lines to pause and reflect which culminates towards the ultimate finish line at commencement.
Wherever you are plotted on the sixteen ‘quarter-markers’ along the high school experience, every stopping point is an opportunity to refine your purpose along the path.
Think of it as ending the year WISEly.
“W” stands for Willpower: At the end of any long project or school year, there’s a natural tendency to become idle. At such times, it takes willpower to see things through to the end. Our students don't necessarily know that yet. To help your son/daughter understand their emotions and develop the willpower they need, you can:
“I” stands for Initiative: When students are struggling with end-of-year motivation, it’s actually a great time to inspire them to reach within themselves and take the Initiative to manage their own learning processes and emotions.
Encourage your son/daughter to:
“S” stands for Stamina: The grit it takes to stay focused and persevere-- day in, day out … and to work really hard to make the goal a reality takes stamina. This type of grit and stamina is a more reliable predictor of academic and professional success than IQ or talent. So, the end of the school year is actually a great opportunity to help your student strengthen this critical quality.
“E” stands for Enthusiasm: The ability to maintain enthusiasm over the long haul is an acquired skill. Teachers model creative ways of regenerating enthusiasm right up until the last day of class. The equation for student success is four main ingredients: Student Engagement, Parent/Guardian Encouragement, Teacher Strategies, and Clear Communication. When all of these “ingredients” are present--the outcomes are endless.
The Motivated Student
By helping your son/daughter finish the school year WISEly, you can ensure he or she develops the qualities needed to succeed not only for school, but in life. I will take complete ownership of the outcomes of this quarter, and work tirelessly to motivate every student and staff member to finish what they start. As I said back in August--Coming together is just the beginning, staying together will lead our progress, and working together will transform lives for generations of Hilltoppers.
Les Miserables, or Les Mis, is the much loved musical based on the 1860's novel of the same name by famous French poet and novelist Victor Hugo. The show premiered in Paris in 1980.
Chardon High School's production will open Thursday, March 16th at 7pm. Shows will also be held on Friday, March 17 & Saturday, March 18th at 7pm and Sunday, March 19th at 2pm.
Location Park Auditorium
111 Goodrich Court
On Chardon Square
Tickets Adults - $12
Students & over 65 - $8
Dates March 16th, 17th 18th @ 7:00 PM
March 19th @ 2:00 PM
Photos from Wednesday
Chardon High School, in accordance with the Ohio Department of Education, will administer the ACT to all juniors (including students taking classes at Auburn Career Center, and students enrolled in CCP courses), on Tuesday, March 21, 2017.
In accordance with the ODE, this is a one-time administration of the ACT, offered at no cost to the student/family. The ACT, a nationally-normed, college readiness exam, provides students and families college and career information.
All juniors must report to the high school by 7:30 am on Tuesday, March 21, 2017 - there will not be delayed start on that day for juniors. ALL other students (grades 9, 10, & 12) will have a regularly scheduled (delayed start) day.
After arriving at CHS, all juniors will be bussed to their testing location as follows:
The testing protocols for administering the ACT are strictly enforced by the ACT.
Upon completion of the ACT, all juniors will be bussed back to CHS, whereby they will be allowed to leave if they have turned in a permission slip. Otherwise, they will stay for lunch and go to classes. Auburn classes for Juniors are cancelled for this day. Students who attend a CCP course in conflict with the ACT administration must make arrangements with their professor.
If you have any questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org, or via phone at 440-285-1412
Chardon’s Chapter of National Honor Society has teamed up with our teachers at CHS to raise awareness and money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Various teachers have pledged to do various tasks or give back to their classrooms if a designated amount is raised by their students. These pledges include earning bonus points, having a quiz dropped, or earning a donut party provided by the teacher. A group of teachers have even pledged to pierce their ear if a large amount is reached. The students have the opportunity to donate to the teachers of their choice in an effort to see their teachers fulfill their pledge.
If you would like to contribute, please feel free to give your donation to a Chardon Student who will donate to the pledge of their choice and of course all proceeds will go to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society!
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact an NHS Officer or NHS Advisers Kristin Cutlip or Lacey Jacobs for more information!
Geauga Park District: Nature Writing Contest
Celebrate the inspiration of Nature in art, and vice versa, by putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) and entering our 22nd annual writing contest! Categories are divided by age group and type of writing, poetry or prose. Prizes included cash and your name printed in our summer newsletter! Click here to download your 2017 entry form, and click here to get inspired by last year's winning entries.
Work Smarter, Not Harder
You can accomplish anything with hard work, they say. Except working your tail off is not always enough. Need proof? You can’t inflate a flat car tire by blowing into it as hard as you can, the same way you can’t effectively mow a lawn with a pair of household scissors. No, you need the right tools, the right strategies, for the right tasks. You need to work smarter, not harder.
How though? By finding shortcuts.
Here are seven tips to help you work more efficiently and more productively without expending any additional effort—aka: here’s how to work smarter, not harder:
1. Walk away
Walking away from a complex task might seem counterintuitive, but breaks can actually make you more productive. Removing yourself from the work environment immediately reduces stress and gives your brain a chance to “catch up.” If you’re working on a hard problem, your subconscious mind will continue working on it even if your conscious mind is trying to relax—which is why sometimes, solutions magically pop into your mind when you aren’t thinking about the problem. Either way, you’ll come back refreshed and in a healthier, more focused mental state for work. This is the whole premise behind our new bell schedule which highlights a "Topper Time."
2. Recognize and eliminate distractions
This should be obvious, but the most dangerous distractions are the ones you don’t even realize are distracting. Maybe you’re working on google document with a couple tabs of research open, and a third tab that’s, conveniently, open to Twitter/Facebook/ Instagram. You get a new notification, so you click out of your doc to check it real quick. You spend 20 seconds looking at the post you were just tagged in (or the event you were just invited to or the “like” your status just got) before you minimize it again. Twenty seconds isn’t a long time, but it breaks your focus and forces you to restart your last train of thought, possibly costing you a few minutes or more. Compound that happening several times an hour, and you’ve instantly reduced your overall productivity.
3. Ignore low-priority items
Low-priority items sneak up on you, artificially increasing the length of your to-do list and distracting you from more important work. Say you’re working on a big project when a friend sends a text. The next thing you know you are lost in conversation, and then you remember to check your bracket and watch basketball. RE-FOCUS! If you don’t need to write them down on your to-do list—they aren’t worth your immediate concern, so you’ll get to them when you get to them. (Just don’t do the same for high-priority tasks.)
4. Create routine habits
Habits happen naturally after they’re formed—they become a ritual, something you can slip into automatically, something you don’t even have to think about. Forming habits is the hard part—a good rule of thumb is to force yourself to commit the action every day, with no breaks from the routine, until it comes naturally.
5. Work in chunks
Instead of sitting down to complete an entire project, sit down to accomplish one goal element or work for a certain number of hours. Forcing yourself to complete the entirety of a project or complex task will stress you out and make you less productive. Instead, allow yourself to work in shorter “bursts” to keep your mind fresh and reduce your anxiety. That way, you can work to the very best of your ability.
6. “Multitask” (not in the traditional sense)
No matter how busy you are, there are always “negative spaces” in your day—and these gaps are when you should “multitask.” Try to fill the empty spaces with productive work. The more you learn and work in these negative spaces, the more you’ll get done overall.
7. Work around your strengths and weaknesses.
You know yourself better than anybody. You have strengths and weaknesses inherent to your being, and they’re going to affect how you work. Navigate around these by taking on more tasks that you’re good at and staying away from ones that slow you down; don’t try to do them all yourself. Every decision that you make should surround your purpose and your why.
Take time to refocus on the simple things as we transition to the last week before Spring Break.
Douglas Murray, Principal
3/17/2017 08:32:36 am
3/18/2017 07:53:12 am
Great advice! I look forward to reading these every week.
4/16/2017 01:53:53 pm
Doug, I don't think I have told you personally what a great thing your Week in Reflection is. Thank you for your dedication to CHS and all you are doing to make it a great place to be a student and a faculty member. I wish you all the best as the year draws to a close. We are lucky to have you! Madelon
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