Sunday, December 28, 2014

Onward to 2015

Albert Einstein once stated, “Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

Self reflection is one of the most simple and basic habits for one to complete, yet it is also one of the most daunting and challenging traits to honestly do. Educational leaders face a daily influx of mandates, reforms and initiatives from state and federal governments on top of their other strenuous job responsibilities.  In a society that is constantly demanding student data, test score increases, and teacher observation perfection, it could be very easy for one to not to reflect as they are overwhelmed.  Yet, self reflection is so vital to a leader's vision, professional, and personal life.

As leaders, it is imperative to take time each day to look at what was achieved, what was not, and what could you improve on.  It doesn't matter if you are an educational leader or a coach in the NFL, you must reflect if you intend to become a stronger, successful leader that your team will follow.

Many leaders claim to reflect for their betterment, yet the true question to ask is, how can one become a stronger leader if they do not have higher goals and aspirations, or simply think that they are fine the way they are with a fixed mindset? All to often arrogance, ego and time are the enemies of reflection, which usually wins over.  

As I mentioned before, leaders must be willing to make a choice of either being brave or comfortable, as they can not be both.  Are you willing to make a difference, or are you simply willing to accept life as it is and not move forward? 

Self reflection allows a leader the opportunity to create new solutions for all that occurred.  It provides a sense of hope and positivity that one can overcome obstacles for higher quality results regardless of the situation.  Reflection can take place through various avenues, such as, talking face to face, blogging, professional learning networks on social media or voxer, emailing, chats in educational courses, or simply writing out items in a daily journal.  Reflection if used properly can be a powerful tool that can unlock many great ideas for one to embrace a life that he and/or she envisioned when they were younger.

Jon Gordon, recently stated "9 of 10 people will fail with their resolutions. 1/2 will fail by end of January. Pick #oneword instead and let it inspire you all year." 

As I look onward to 2015, I have several words that will be my focus:

Balance: Being the best husband, father, and lead learner possible. This will continue to be my biggest challenge as I hold myself to such high expectations in each category. 

Serving: Continue to assist my staff, students, parents, and the stakeholders of the school community to improve on a daily basis. My ultimate goal is to create an extraordinary learning environment that strives on culture, technology, and safety. 

Network: Continue to interact with my amazing PLN and making new connections along the way. This past year, I was able to connect with so many dedicated, passionate educators from across the country who helped me to grow as a lead learner and most importantly, a better person. I'm looking forward to attending the Executive Summit at FETC, NJASA Techspo, EdCampSoJersey, EdCampLdr, NJPAECET2, ISTE and other opportunities that present themselves throughout the year. 

Vision: Continue to look towards the future, as the jobs of tomorrow are still not there. Create Makerspaces, promote risk taking, revamping curriculum, setting up partnerships with outside resources, and creating student tech squads. I want our students ready to solve current and future problems of everyday society. 

Positive: The power of positivity is a dynamic ingredient that can greatly influence one's reflection. Without positivity and hope, one's reflection may not provide the ideas that one needs to grow or be more successful.

What word or words will you select? Share your word(s) for 2015 and inspire others to move onward! 

Here are just some of the events of 2014: 

Ms. America Visit
Duct Tape the Principal

Top 40 Under 40 in Atlantic City Weekly
EdCampUSA with Arne Duncan
Presented at EdCampUSA in DC with Dr. Joe Mazza
Assisted in organizing and presented at EdCampLdr at UPENN


NCMS Entry Way Today- 3 years ago this wall was blank!

Won The Samsung Solve for Tomorrow Contest- $20,000 of tech for our students!

Henry and I with new spirit wear! #NCSPRIDE

Always charging for our BYOD program

Donated News desk from Fox 29 News

My Daily Inspirations 

Best Friends
Henry already a "connected" student at the age of 2.