Back to School Team Building

I found a wonderful video a few months ago.  I always save video links in a notepad on my phone.  You just never know when you might need it.

My good friend, Lauren, reminded me of this video just last week.  For simply watching the video, I knew I wanted to recreate the activity on campus with the staff.

So take a look at the video, All That We Share.



TEAM BUILDING ACTIVITY

1.  Ask your staff to stand in a circle in the room.  

2.  Explain that we are all here together because we are connected to the same passions.

Our passion to serve. 

Our passion to teach.  

Our passion to inspire, motivate, and to make a difference.

3.  Explain now that we share more things in common that you just might not realize.  You will then read out a few statements.  If they have these in common, they will join the middle of the circle.  Ask them to take a minute and recognize the people standing around you that share the same things with you.

4.  The statements at the beginning are simple and lack little meaning.  As you reach the bottom of the list, the statements are more powerful.

STATEMENTS

Who likes coffee?
Who has ever travelled overseas?
Who is scared of heights?
Who has famous relatives?
Who likes to ride motorcycles?
Does anyone think Chic Fil A is overrated?
Who exercises at least 4 times a week?
Who has never had a speeding ticket?
Who has ridden on a subway?
Who has never been on a plane?
Who has ever taken on a restaurant's food challenge?
Who plays video games?
Who has never seen The Godfather?
Who is a step parent?
Who has a step parent?
Who said they would never be a teacher?
Who has ever been bullied?
Who has saved someone’s life?
Who has beaten cancer?

Who is here today ready to make a difference this year?

"The students placed in your classes are here for a reason too. Some student in your class needs you this year. It is our job to determine who that is and what that need is. Let's go make a difference."
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Back To School Transformations

Our campus is going through some renovations.  I couldn't be more happier for my students, parents, and staff.  They deserve this beautiful space.  The library needed a big makeover.  The library furniture was outdated.  The fluorescent lighting wasn't giving off the best light for reading.  The space just wasn't inviting.  The library wasn't a space where anyone wanted to stay for long periods of time.  Thankfully the community passed a bond, and we are now blessed with this beautiful space.

BEFORE RENOVATION




AFTER RENOVATION



The library is divided into multiple sections.  (1) We have an upper elementary section that can be used by students and staff. (2) A lower elementary section for our youngest students.  (3) A reading cave; and (4) a lounging or gathering space.




Literacy Library 

Two years ago I started purchasing leveled books for guided reading.  Over the two years,  I spent as much money as I could investing in our literacy program.  The book bins were purchased from Ikea.  They are just heavy cardboard, but they really do the job.  I created the color-coded labels on my computer.  You can download them here.



The book cases were ordered from Amazon and stacked on top of each other.  I ordered 4 total.  Maintenance braced them together and then for extra safety measures we braced them to the wall.



HOUSE SYSTEM

PRESENTATION


Download Welcome to My House Presentation

We are excited to kick off the 2019-2020 school year and introduce the House System to our students.    At the end of 2018-2019 school year, we discussed this idea with the staff.  They were 100% on board.  Thankfully, I have had the opportunity to collaborate with some great principals who have already paved the way for me.  Heather Patterson and Trent Hamilton are both Texas principals and have implemented the House System a few years ago.  Through the use of social media and this blog, I am able to connect to other administrators and brainstorm ideas, share resources, and just build great friendships.

I also watched Ron Clark's Facebook Live presentation this summer.  I found about it through social media and marked it on my calendar.  This too was a big help.  You can watch the playback of the event here.

Ron Clark Youtube

STAFF HOUSE REVEAL



My staff will be in a House.  I thought and thought about how to reveal their Houses.  A lot of school do balloon popping, spinning the wheel, etc...  However, I had forgotten I had these scratch off tickets until I was going through my supplies.  I immediately knew this is what I wanted to do.  So the entire staff will scratch off their tickets to review a number: 1, 2, or 3.  We have three Houses.  We have not named our Houses or assigned colors yet so adding a number under the scratch off was the best option for me.


These are the best scratch off stickers!  I purchased 1000 of them, and they will last forever.



SUMMER MORALE BOOSTER


Our maintenance, custodial staff, and construction crews have worked so hard this summer.  Since we are under a big renovation, they have been working even harder despite the dust, piles of tools and buckets of paint throughout the halls.  We decided to have an afternoon of ice cold watermelon as a treat.  Watermelon is affordable and delicious too.  If you need a great pick-me-up, this is the perfect one for a hot summer day.  

For more MORALE BOOSTERS, check out Morale Magic!  It has everything you need for many years of gifting and lifting spirits.







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