Wisdom for Teachers from a Hot Dog Vendor

There is so much wisdom to be found in our world.  Sometimes all we have to do is pay close attention and take it all in.

In my town we have a quaint ‘main street’ that is filled with small independent shops, trendy cafes and unique restaurants.   One person, however, that has made himself a much needed staple in the community is our local hot dog vendor.  He provides a service that many business people in the area just couldn’t live without…. a quick, cheap lunch.  He started a few years ago, and despite the intense competition he faces,  he has continued to flourish year after year. 

As teachers, I think we can glean some wisdom from the success of this hot dog vendor by leaning in and paying close attention to some simple secrets he possesses.

How to Strive Through the Storms of Leadership

The strength of a storm must be respected.  However, when we take the time to step outside, once it has passed, we will be given the opportunity to smell the fresh new air it has left behind and work together like never before.

Great leaders will face storms, yet it is often through the fury that we find fortitude.  Whether the storms we face totally destroy the foundation of our vision or they try to simply hinder our progress, it is crucial to approach them with a plan.  When a leader is prepared before the storm hits, they will be able to emerge even stronger than before.  The key is in how you handle the storms that come your way.

Dear Student of Mine…

The POWER of a Simple Letter

Emotions. Our students are filled with them when they walk into our lives for the first time.   A mix of excitement, nerves and a touch of fear will consume them as they slowly enter the classroom.

As a teacher, your response to their emotions may be one of the most impactful steps you take all year.  Tread lightly and know that one of the greatest things you can do to calm their nerves is to be transparent.  Build relationships from day one, and alleviate their fears by setting a stage of trust.

One thing I find to be so helpful is to greet new students with a simple letter.  A letter that lays out what they can expect from me, and explains my goals as their teacher and mentor this year.

The Justice League: Teach as One

Superhero Summer Series: Final Chapter

The Justice League is compiled of some of the most powerful superheroes of all time.   Alone, each hero is POWERFUL, yet together they are an UNSTOPPABLE force to be reckoned with.

As a teacher, you bring your own unique skill set into the profession.  The different abilities and skills that you possess could be considered your very own superpowers.  Alone, you are powerful, yet imagine if we attempted to ‘save the world’ together instead of going at it alone.

Just like the most powerful superheroes of our time, when we work together we can change the world.

Hermione: 3 Spells to Cast as a Leader

Summer Superhero Series: Volume Four

Hermione wields the wand of change.  By casting her spell through her adventures, she changes the narrative and gives us the realization of a female hero that girls look up to and boys revere.

As leaders, we can learn a lot through taking a closer look at Hermione.  She demonstrates so many qualities that are found within great leadership, and her actions speak louder than her words.  With each spell she casts, she teaches us how to be the kind of leader others want to follow.

Spider-Man: 4 POWERS Teachers Possess

Summer Superhero Series: Volume Three

Spiderman is an ‘accidental’ superhero.  He has powers bestowed upon him that he never intended to have, and he never knew existed.

Spider-Man: 4 POWERS Teacher's Possess

In teaching we often face situations that we never expected would happen.  Just like Spider-Man, however, we have been gifted with powers that we never knew existed or we often take for granted.  All we have to do is look within to find them, and learn to wield them well.

GROOT: 3 Lessons to Learn as Leaders

Summer Superhero Series: Volume Two

Groot is a superhero who does not need words to define his leadership.  He uses his actions and his example to demonstrate his strength, and others take notice.

GROOT: 3 Lessons to Learn as Leaders

Leadership is tough. It is not something that can be mastered by following a formula or a framework.  It is something that is learned over time, through years of observation and mentorship.  Groot is a perfect example of selfless leadership in action.

Lead like Groot and take these lessons to heart as you tackle the task of leadership.

Wonder Woman: 4 Lessons to Empower the Girls We Teach

Summer Superhero Series: Volume One

Wonder Woman is not simply a ‘female’ superhero, but rather she is a superhero who happens to be a female. There is a big difference.

When young girls in classrooms around the world understand this difference, they become empowered. They truly believe that they have the strength and fortitude to change the world. They become fierce.

We must teach our girls to ‘embrace the wonder,’ and internalize the lessons they can learn from Wonder Woman.

Teaching the ‘Chipotle’ Way… Turn up the Heat!

I am not a big fan of fast food. Every time I take a moment to indulge, it costs me a pound or two! This may not sound like much, but it adds up over time and it just isn’t worth it.

If I do decide that I need a quick meal however, one place I like to frequent is Chipotle.  Although they provide a meal that I can get quickly, they do not offer the low quality of other fast food chains.  In my opinion, they provide food fast, NOT fast food!

As teachers, we can learn from how Chipotle has changed the face of fast food forever, and steal a few key ideas that have been the secret to their success to implement into our teaching.

I am a Teacher and I am Proud

When it comes to making a difference in this world, teachers are on the top of the list.

 If you’ve ever had the benefit of a making a student smile, seeing the ‘aha’ moment in a child’s eye or being the difference maker in the life of a student, then you know just how powerful teaching can be.  Although it can be a difficult road, there is nothing quite like being a teacher.