The Response-Able Educator Newsletter 3
Welcome! This is a free newsletter on becoming a Response-Able teacher
and developing Response-Able students.
My mission is to inspire, encourage and uplift the spirits of educators
so they can in turn inspire, encourage, and uplift the spirits of their
IN THIS ISSUE
2. Idea Exchange
4. Teacher Talk
6. Website of the Month
7. Article: "A New Attitude"
8. Subscription Information
"You can not teach a man anything. You can only help him find it within
"I Urge" Telegrams
Have students choose a real person and have them write telegrams to that
individual beginning with , "I urge you to..." Challenge students to construct
their message in 15 or fewer words. Telegrams may be written to politicians,
local officials, the school board, entertainers, t.v. executives, friends,
or relatives. Messages need to reflect something students value of feel
Stop in the middle of a story. Name a character and have students write
them an "I urge" telegram.
Frustrated with the text book. Have students write an "I urge" telegram
to the publisher.
After passing back a test and reviewing it, have student write an "I
urge" message to themselves.
Ask your, soon to be moving on, students to write an "I urge" message
to the teachers at the next grade level.
Read an article from the newspaper aloud. Have students respond with
an "I urge" telegram.
Whatever "I urge" variation or adaptation you choose to use, be sure
to show students two or more quality examples of what you expect. It will
help them develop a mental model in their heads of what quality work looks
We had a student that was so dumb he tried to blow up a school bus.
He got what he deserved though. He burned his lips on the tail pipe.
"I don't like what I just heard. If you are angry, please tell me another
When you share this key phrase with students, what you are really saying
is, "I have too much respect for myself to be talked to this way. Please
share your thoughts and feelings in a way that honors me as a person."
This form of communication also shows respect for the child. It announces,
"I think your feelings are important. You have a right to express them
here. I will listen to you and consider your feedback. Please tell me
in a way that gives me useful information."
P.108, "Teacher Talk: What It really Means," by Chick Moorman and Nancy
“Teacher Talk: What It Really Means” by Chick Moorman and Nancy Weber is
available from Personal Power Press, $13.95 by calling toll free, 877-360-1477
or emailing IPP57@aol.com.
How would schools be different if we did not see them as a place of
discovery, a hotbed of inquiry, or even as a center of learning, but rather
we saw them as primarily a place of creation; the creation of who and
what we are as human beings?
6. Website of the Month [back
Do you have a student who is apathetic? Or one that blurts out in class
and can't seem to help herself? How about a complainer or an excuse maker?
If so, this Website is for you. Check out www.disciplinehelp.com.
At www.disciplinehelp.com you will find help for 117 specific behavior
problems. Included is information detailing the specific attitudes and
actions that accompany the behavior, effects that behavior has on you
and the other students, the primary cause of the behavior, and best of
all, actions to take to eliminate the behavior.
The suggestions offered on this site are specific, prescriptive, and
practical. Check it out.
We enjoy ideas, concerns, frustrations, successes, and encouragement.
Contact us at.... firstname.lastname@example.org.
A New Attitude
By Chick Moorman
Patty Tamble teaches math to
high school students in Sauk Rapids, MN. “I have a group of students in
a low ability class who make no secret out of the fact that they hate
math,” she says. “They inform me continually that they can’t do math.”
It was obvious to Patty that
her students needed a new attitude towards math. Since they had accumulated
years of experience with math and had developed strong core beliefs about
that subject, Patty needed a strategy to help them start over. She needed
an activity that would help them throw away their old beliefs about math
and begin again, hopefully with a new attitude.
Who knows where these kind of
ideas come from? Patty did not find this one in a curriculum guide. It
wasn’t in her math text book, either. No Spirit Whisperer directory of
1001 great ideas presently exists. The idea came from somewhere inside
the math teacher in Sauk Rapids, MN who teaches students who don’t like
One class period Patty asked
her students to take out a blank piece of paper. They did. She then asked
them to write all the negative comments they could think of about math
on their papers. They did.
With the first part of the assignment
accomplished and her students’ full attention, Patty instructed them to
ball up their papers and crush them in their hands. “Crush all those
negative beliefs about math,” she challenged. “Take out every math frustration
you have ever had on that balled up piece of paper. Get into it. Squeeze
it tight. Squeeze the irritation, the embarrassment, the fear right out
of it.” Once again, students followed her instructions.
“It’s time now,” she announced,
“to throw away those old math attitudes, to begin again with a fresh attitude,
with a clean slate. I want you to line up, beginning on my right, and
throw your old math attitudes away. I want you to pitch them right here
into the recycling bin.” Row by row, student by student, they lined up,
threw away their old math attitudes, smiled, and returned to their seats.
Patty knows that building new
math attitudes with these students could be a long, slow process. She
knows that developing positive attitudes towards math after years of frustration,
will require much dedication, persistence, and effort on her part. She’s
up to it. She’s a Spirit Whisperer.
Patty Tamble can be reached
8. Subscription Information [back
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