Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Picture of the Week

Creative Writing: 

We will begin our creative writing on the blog. I am excited to see all of your creative stories!
You are going to write a narrative.
A narrative is another name for a story.

STUDENTS: Let's begin by making this simple.
I want you to write the BEGINNING of a story.
Introduce me to the cow and its problem. 
Remember the beginning of a story introduces you to the 
character, setting and the problem.

See you at the Edge!- Mrs. Shelby 

EDU638 Guest Blogger: Latrina Walker

"Leadership has less to do with position than it does disposition." John C. Maxwell

The definition of disposition speaks directly to a person’s inherent qualities of mind and character.  A leader must exhibit the characteristic disposition enabling them to be a fair person and not let others get the best of them.  Dispositions are driven by attitudes and beliefs, which goes along with values.  Good attributes for a leader includes being caring, fair, honest, and responsible.
Leadership is the action of leading a group of people or an organization.  Leadership is an action, not a position.  What you do and believe provide others a window of who you are as a leader.  A leader must always remember the image or idea of being a role model.
Dr. Myles Munroe stated in his book instead of seeking an elevated position in life, we should develop a strong disposition.  We can begin by asking ourselves questions such as these:
  •      Have I placed more value on my status or title than on my character?
  •      What perceptions do I have about myself, other people, and the world?  Are they aligned with my purpose? Do they reflect the values I claim to have?
  •      What is my true nature, apart from my reputation?
  •      What values will I refuse to deny because, to do so, I would violate my ideals and ethics?
“Leadership is a state of mind; it is a disposition, not a position.”  Leadership is a thought choice, not a title.  Leadership is a mind mindset and the belief that you have adopted or learned through your own life experiences.
44 Inspiring John C. Maxwell Quotes for Leadership Success

Munroe, M. (2014). 6. In The Power of Character in Leadership (Vol. 1, pp. 19-21). Whitaker House Publishing.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Social Studies Writing: To Build or Not to Build?

Take a look at the pictures below.  Some of the pictures show a fertile land and some of the pictures show a flooded land.  Be sure to look carefully at the pictures.

Fertile Lands

 Flooded Lands

Look at the map below.  The pictures above are a result of the river below.  Your prompt today...
Look at this location.  Do you think it would be a good idea to build a house near this river?  Why or why not?  Write a paragraph to support your opinion.  Be sure to include all the pieces of a good paragraph.  Introduce the topic, state your opinion, provide reasons and support, and write a strong conclusion. Be sure to sign your name at the end of your paragraph.  Happy writing!  

See you at the edge!

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Inferences in Social Studies: The Nile River

You have been learning about inferences in reading.
You have been learning about the Nile River in social studies.
Let's put the 2 together.

Look at these 2 pictures.
What do you see?
What do you know about this place?

STUDENTS:  Looking at the photographs.  
What was the purpose of the Aswan Dam in Egypt?  
Did it help or hinder the life of the Egyptians?  

** Remember to put your name at the end of your comment.

See you at the Edge - Mrs. Shelby

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Enrichment: Food Webs

All life needs energy.  The transfer of energy is called a Food Web.  Food Webs are made of Food Chains.  Examine the picture below.

Writing Prompt:  Create a paragraph that tells about one Food Chain that you find in the Food Web.  Be sure that you include an Introduction of your Topic as well as a Creative Conclusion.  Vocabulary is important.  Use your resources from your 5 stations.

When you are done with your paragraph, go to this link and create a Food Web.

Be sure and comment on a classmate's paragraph.  Write Strong.  Please note that you can only write your post after you have completed the 5 stations with success.  Early entries will be deleted.

See you at the edge!

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Guest Bloggers: EDU638 Roz Durant

Leaders who are effective are leaders who are disciplined in their daily lives.    

According to Proverbs 4:1.  Hear, O son, the instruction of a father, and give attention that you may gain understanding.  In order to give instruction a person has to well discipline in their thinking, speaking and knowledge.
John Maxwell says, “You can’t prioritize if you don’t know your priorities.”   He shares how he starts his day and give a few pointers that we could begin using to help us be better in effective discipline.  I will begin to use some of these pointers in my daily life.  This style of leadership is something that people would love to model.

Leaders need to display a discipline life that people can trust and would love to follow.  A disciplined leader will have the determination to lead a group to be the best that they can be.  If a leader fails to have discipline in his daily life how can he lead us?  In the book Seven Disciplines of a leader, Jeff Wolf mentions, “Great leaders exude a passion from within to grow, learn and build teams.” Wolf also states, “His focus is on how leaders can help their colleagues, team, and organization achieve maximum effectiveness, at all levels and in all areas of the given enterprise. The seven disciplines that Wolf proposes could just as well have been five, nine, or a dozen. Whatever the number, such disciplines are the "what" of leadership.”

The Seven Disciplines are: 
• Discipline 1: Initiative and Influence 
• Discipline 2: Vision, Strategy, and Alignment 
• Discipline 3: Priorities, Planning, and Execution 
• Discipline 4: Social/Emotional/Political (SEP) Intelligence 
• Discipline 5: Reciprocation, Collaboration and Service 
• Discipline 6: Love and Leverage 
• Discipline 7: Renewal and Sustainability

According to Mark Sanborn, “The biggest challenge of a disciplined leader is not being successful; it is being successful over the long run.  Longevity trumps the temporary and requires daily disciplines.”

Men and women who achieve leadership positions, who display what others refer to as personal power, are invariably those who possess indomitable willpower and the ability to persist in a good cause until success is achieved. The more you endure when the going gets rough, the more self-discipline you display.  Disciplined leaders resolve conflicts, and relied on their self-discipline to make the right choices.  Principals are consider leaders in the school. They have vision of the type of team that they want.  Disciplined Leaders show desirable characteristics; they have ambition and demonstrate certain skills.  The leader has to be a person that has a caring and passionate spirit and loves his or her job.  The disciplined leader works well and gets along with co-workers on a professional level.  A leader should know how to associate with people outside the work walls.


44 Inspiring John C. Maxwell Quotes for Leadership Success

Leadership and Management Coach, Jeff Wolf,

The 7 Disciplines of a Successful Leader

Monday, September 14, 2015

Our National Government: The Constitution

Read the following passage.  There is a prompt at the end.  You will be writing an opinion paragraph about this topic!

For many years, a king ruled America.  His name was George.  He lived in England.  After fighting a big war, George needed money.  He started to tax America.  The people were very mad.  They did not want to pay money to England.  If they had to pay, however, they wanted a part in the English government.  The king wouldn't listen to them.  So, they fought for their freedom.  And they won!

Now America was a new country.  There were thirteen states in America.  The people needed a government that would be fair.  It also needed to unite them as a free country.  The states had fought hard to be free.  They wanted to stay free.  Many did not want a strong government.

In 1781, a group of men met in Philadelphia to plan a new government.  The first time they set up a plan, the government was weak.  America discovered many problems with the government.  It could make laws, but it could not make the people obey them.  Everyone knew that the government had to be changed.  The states sent men to another meeting.  This time they knew they needed a strong government.  But, they also knew the states needed to have rights.

They talked a lot about what to do.  Some states were small. They wanted to be sure that they had an equal voice in the new government.  The big states wanted to be sure that all of their people would be heard too.  The men who were meeting debated and argued.  Finally, they decided how to set up the government.  The new government would have three sections called branches.

The first branch they planned was the legislative branch.  They called it the Congress and divided it into two houses, the Senate and the House of Representatives.  The Senate made the small states happy.  Each state would have two Senators.  The House made the larger states happy.  Population would decide how many people would serve in the House.

The legislative branch would make the laws.  They would also decide how much money the government could spend.  They gave the Congress the power to approve decisions made by the executive branch.  No one would have complete power in the government.  The Congress would also have the power to remove government officials from office if they broke the law.

The second branch they planned was the executive branch.  One person would be the leader of this part of the government.  The leader would be called the president.  Some people wanted the president to serve for life.  Many people didn't like this idea.  It was too much like having a king.  So, they decided the president would serve four-year terms.  They also said that whoever served as president had to be thirty-five years old and a natural born citizen.  The leader of our country needed to be experienced and loyal to America.

Today in the executive branch, many departments help carry out the laws made by Congress.  All this is done under the leadership of the president.  The president is given the power to approve or veto laws.  He also chooses judges, ambassadors, and department leaders.  In addition, the president makes treaties with other countries.  The Congress, however, has to approve these decisions.  This keeps the president from becoming too powerful.

The third branch of the government was the judicial branch.  When it was first planned, it was only the Supreme Court.  Later, the Congress added U.S. Appeals Courts.  The courts have the power to decide if laws are fair.  They also hear legal cases where federal laws are broken.  The Supreme Court is called the highest court in the land.  In most cases, their decision is final.

When the plan for the government was finished, it was call the Constitution.  When the states were deciding if they liked it or not, some people were concerned that the people's rights were not written down.  This was changed in 1789 by adding the first ten amendments to the Constitution.  These amendments are call the Bill of Rights.

Our government was planned to keep us a free nation.  Free from a king.  Free from absolute rule.  People have a voice in what the government does.  All because a king decided to tax America.

Please answer the following prompt in a paragraph.  What do you think it would be like in America if the government couldn't make people obey the laws?

Don't forget to...
  • Introduce the Topic
  • State Your Opinion
  • Organize your reasons
  • Use linking words to explain your reasons
  • Write a conclusion
You can do this!  Remember to read the prompt carefully and frequently.  Make sure your paragraph answers the question.  Tell me what you think!  Blog writing will occur on Thursday - early entries will be deleted!

See you at the Edge!

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

EDU638 Guest Bloggers: Wilma Tyus

"A leader with confidence is a leader who brings out positive changes in people."                                                   John C. Maxwell

This famous quote has inspired many people including educators. Most people who are successful in life, have had an encountered with a leader who was seasoned with confidence. Whereas, leaders encourage them by surfacing the positive things already within.

“Confidence in oneself is the cornerstone of successful leadership. Only those who believe in themselves have enough optimism to see the best in those around them. Self-confidence breeds confidence in others.” Similarly, if you smile at others most likely they will smile in return. This quote was used in the Leadership Wired Blog titled “A Leader’s Greatest Things” by the John Maxwell Company (

“The skill of self-confidence is the ability to believe in yourself to accomplish any task,” Dr. Ivan Joseph quoted in his video. This video was chosen because I believe leadership has to be developed over a period of time. Also I believe a leader must believe in him or herself first in order to bring out positive changes in others. Furthermore, this confidence is channeled by growth in your everyday practice as an educator.

Dr. Ivan Joseph: The Skill of Self-Confidence

John C. Maxwell wrote a book called “Be a People Person: Effective Leadership through Effective Relationships.” I liked this book because it explains why an effective leader must establish and maintain good relationships with others. However, a leader has to develop own confidence and exemplify it among followers. A leader with confidence helps build confidence in others. 

I enjoyed previously, Colette Carrabba’s posting on the video, “The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership.” This video also engaged in the growth of a leader and his confidence as motivation.

Personally, this quote was chosen mainly because I cherished the influence in my life from leaders. Leaders who saw something special in me. Leaders like my mother, aunts, teachers, and religious mentors. I was influenced greatly by these leaders because they had a special confidence exemplified by believing in themselves and believing in me when I did not.

  Leadership Motto: You be the first to model the desired behavior.

  Favorite Scripture: “Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward.” Hebrews 10:3
  Your feedback, thoughts, opinions, and comments are welcomed. Thank you.  Wilma Tyus


Tuesday, September 8, 2015

EDU638 Tweets!

Motivating others requires planning.  You must know your audience – their needs, wants, and desires.  You must know what professional development they need, how they want to be acknowledged or what they desire to become during this school year.  Teaching and learning should bring joy.  

This assignment for EDU638 Instructional Design and Improvement is an action oriented assignment.  The graduate students are asked to tweet up to 5 times a day.  They are looking for faculty and staff to motivate, ideas that motivate them and then sharing them with the world.  

The graduate students are going to capture their tweets through The Tweeted Times.  The Tweeted Times is a real-time personalized newspaper generated from your Twitter account. An example of what this will look like is found here  

As instructional leaders, we want to have an impact on learning and school culture.  Join us in this week's journey.  Begin your own tweeting trend by sharing your successes and failures on Twitter.  Use the hashtag #(insert your initial here) motivates.  Mine looks like this #bamotivates.  Let's make a difference this week as we share through tweets.