Friday, January 24, 2014

Keys to Maximizing Your Student's Motivation

One of the biggest challenges for any school is how to keep students motivated.  It's challenging to create a school environment where everyone wants to show up every day. There are some key things that you want to keep in mind. Students are not always clear on their goals. School should be a place where they can find their purpose. Students need an opportunity to express themselves and school is a great place to do it.  If all classes find a way to incorporate interactive projects and group efforts and friendly competition you will get better results. Allow students to offer suggestions. Here are more tips: 

1.  Offer tutoring throughout the day and encourage students to earn better grades

2.  Hire teachers who believe that the students are going to be success

3. Incorporate current events into all classes

4. Have a school wide community project

5.  Visit cultural locations with students in another city

6. Have a council of student leaders that represent each grade

7.  Give students an opportunity to teach a part of your lesson.

8.  Develop an exchange of idea program with another school

9. Get your local college's small business office to help your students with starting their own small businesses

10.  Create many ways for parents to participate in the school with conference calls and meetings at the school and in the community.

Don''t stay stuck in the way that you've done things with your students. They are waiting for you to be innovative and engaging. There is a lot that you can do differently and it won't cost money. Always ask your students questions. They want a good school environment too. Seek to uncover your leaders.  Some disruptive students are leaders who have not found the right way to express themselves.  Ask them to help organize the right thing and this student will change.  Every student needs a spark to ignite their enthusiasm for learning. Take time to listen to your students and you can uncover all that's necessary to raise your students motivation.  Dr. Stephen Jones is an professional development/workshop presenter and author of the Seven Secrets of How to Study at

Monday, January 20, 2014

Unique Time Management Ideas for Busy k12 Professionals

One of the greatest crisis for a k12 principal, vice-principal or teacher is time management. As a professional you are constantly planning but still feeling like there is insufficient time to get things done. Use the power of your words to remind yourself that all things are possible when you follow your plan. You must also be willing to reduce the time of your meetings. Give people more responsibility as a part of their professional development. Ask your staff to send you brief emails to keep you updated. Here are other things you can do:

1.  Make a list of things you can do to save time and follow it.

2.  Organize your office for 15 minutes twice a week

3. Get fit and you will have more energy to accomplish a task

4. Create shorter meetings with an agenda that you follow

5.  Have a things to do list that you check off when something is accomplished 

6.  Make family time a priority by knowing when to leave work

7.  Get connected with families in the community to establish a relationship with parents of children who attend your school

8.  Say no to things that distract you.

9.  Identify an accountability partner who can help you with time management 

10.  Send someone to represent you at events that you cannot attend. Ask them to take notes and email them to you.

If you have a plan, you can find ways get control of your time. Occasionally consider taking a Friday off to reduce your stress. Each Saturday or Sunday take a few minutes to work on your time management plan. You are in control of your destiny. You can have more time by organizing and believing that your plan will be successful. Dr Stephen Jones is a professional development presenter and author of the Seven Secrets of How to Study, the Parent's Ultimate Education Guide and the Ultimate Scholarship Guide at To review free copies of his books for your school in the US send your address to You can contact Dr. Jones at 610-842-3843.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Vice Principals the Aspiring Leaders of Tomorrow

The leaders that we need for tomorrow are the vice-principals that we see in schools today.  There is a fertile group of administrators who are often one step away from the principal’s role.  The experiences that will lead to a successful role as a principal must be a daily task.   There are decisions about the administration of the school, teachers and the academic success of students. These all combine into a tangles web of decisions that require forethought and immediate responses.  Some vice- principals serve as the Dean of Students while others manage the academic affairs of their school. All leadership opportunities add up to experience s that help’s the vice-principal to grow into a future leadership role. There are ten things that you can do to develop your skills as a leader:
1.  Identify a mentor who has plenty of principal experience
2.  Pursue a master’s degree in management with an emphasis on leadership
3.  Attend leadership seminars whenever you attend a conference
4.  Take on a project that’s important to your school district and do a good job
5. Have a plan for your physical fitness
6. Meet and connect with people who attend district wide training sessions for principals
7.  Participate on a panel during a workshop discussing school management
8.  Write an article concerning your role in your K12 school and distribute it
9.  Create a plan of action concerning your timeline for becoming a principal.
10. Take a technology course to enhance your skills

You are on a journey that requires an open mind to everything that will lead to your success. Never allow yourself to be isolated. You will need people to help you to succeed.  While you are a vice principal you have a good amount of time getting people to know you.  You can often listen to concerns that the principal does not hear from staff and students. Effective communication starts with listening.  Listen to the concerns of your staff and parents.  Always seek to find a solution to problems and don’t let carry on for weeks and weeks.  You are the captain of your goal to become principal.

Dr Stephen Jones is education consultant, author of three books the Seven Secrets of How to Study, the Parent's Ultimate Education Guide and the Ultimate Scholarship Guide available at