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Subject: ⚖️ social emotional learning
Here are a few thoughts on school growth from our work with schools this week.
If you enjoy this newsletter, please share it with your fellow school leaders (they can sign up here).
1. Tip of the week
I am keeping with the theme of last week, social emotional learning.
The pendulum is seriously swinging back, wildly so. After No Child Left Behind, everyone is quickly dropping the test score game and looking at SEL. If the DoE or Education Authority near you is not yet singing this tune, they will soon.What are you doing with SEL?
If the answer is "not much", you need to start.
I am not equiped to talk deeply about the pedagogical benefits. Although studies are coming in strong and (talking to over 10 school leaders per day) we see trends coming, and this one is coming in strong.
I let you judge the effect on learning outcomes since you are the expert. But think about marketing. I hear a lot of educators tell us: "Oh, we are already doing that, we've been doing it for ages".
Seriously? Then align the way you do it to the best practice and call it for what it is. Buzzwords matter. Parents are reading up on these things.
Also, the explosion of our recently added grant service allows us to talk to many foundations. It's exciting. You will get more funding if you align your pedagogy to what everyone is talking about.
SEL, STEAM, PBL...lot's of acronyms :)
2. Thought of the week
Keeping up with the topic above, I find it more and more interesting to keep up with the studies that different foundations and associations are issuing. I have created an RSS feed in Feedly to scan them quickly and I've set myself a goal to read 2-3 full studies per week.
The patterns are already quite revealing and helpful in terms of getting grants for our school customers but also in terms of marketing.
We've started to experiment using some of the research findings in our Facebook ads. Preliminary results are promising.
Parents want you to be the experts, thinking deeply about future trends, aware of what the research is saying and implementing new initiatives in your school.
3. On our podcast
Stephen talks about how he combines his teaching and marketing experience. You should always feel excited when you see two seemingly separate fields coming together. Want to listen to how Bank Street College of Education in New York City handles Admissions and Marketing?
4. Most popular blog posts ✍️
Here are our two most read blog posts this week...enjoy :)
How to Think Like a School Entrepreneur
By its very nature, a school leader's job leaves little time for reflection.You rush from meeting to meeting, check your e-mail constantly, put out fire after fire, and make countless phone calls.
3 Ways to Improve Your School's Brand Recall
For most schools, the biggest opportunity for growth comes from taking families from enrolling zero times to enrolling once.
Let me explain why this mental model is crucial to your school’s growth.
5. Inside our FB Group
Here's what happened in the group this week in case you missed it.
- Everyone: who is interested in an online video meeting (Zoom) with Michelle Thompson Hartmann about her experience with Headstart? We may have someone from the organization attending.
- Hi! Our school has a booth at an outdoor festival next weekend. There's a "green" focus to the event. I'm wondering if anyone has used QR codes instead of brochures?
A quote about marketing
- “Stop selling. Start helping.” – ZigZiglar
A quote about schools
- "If we consider the numbers of people on Reddit and other social media who were learning together about law and the judicial system, the science of cell phone transmissions, the history of colliding cultures, and urban demographics from just one series of podcasts on Serial, we can find in all the learning that occurred and the conversations it generated, the audio series created a new paradigm about what's possible for learners of all ages."
– Timeless Learning: How Imagination, Observation, and Zero-Based Thinking Change Schools
Ira Socol, Pam Moran, and Chad Ratliff
Have a great end of the week!