Monday Moanin Thoughts #303 Get Some Rest Then Get To Work

Happy June 2018 Monday Moanin to everyone. For many of you this may be your first week without students or of summer vacation. After a long and challenging school year it is important to recharge and get some rest. Enjoy some quality family time and have your share of fun. After a few weeks of rest and relaxation, it is time to get to work. The following ideas hopefully will assist as you begin planning for the summer and upcoming 2018-19 school year. Give consideration to the following strategies. Read more

Monday Moanin Thoughts #302 Happy Fathers Day 2018

Welcome to  an early MMT and happy Fathers Day 2018. For many of you tomorrow may be the first Monday Moanin in a long time where you can hit the snooze on your iPhone alarm. Enjoy the experience! Today, I think about all of the men who have influenced me in my life and I am grateful for their help. Today I honor two of those men. Of course I think about my dad, Don Hickey with fond memories and appreciation. He passed away in 1991 and I think of him daily. His humor, work ethic, faith, caring attitude, and his love of family and his wife Rose, has rubbed off on all of his 6 sons.  As my brother Bill said at his funeral, Don Lives! Another father that is a wonderful model for me is my father-in-law, George. He has been my other Dad for 28 years. He also is a model for me and he exhibits all of the traits I admired in my Dad. Above all he is the definition of a giver.  At 84 he is an avid golfer, loving husband and father. He gives freely in caring for his wife as she deals with the challenges of Alzheimer’s. Not an easy task but he handles it with grace and a strong faith. I am so lucky to have these good men  model for me what it means to be a father and a husband. Thank you so much. Read more

Monday Moanin Thoughts #301 Final Week Of School? Try These Out.

Happy mid June 2018 Monday Moanin to all of you. For many of you this may be your last week of school for the 2017-18 year. These days for many students can be filled with lots of emotions, distractions, and for some, anxiety. One example for these behaviors  is that not every student is looking forward to the summer recess. Read more

Monday Moanin Thoughts #300 Ask For Feedback

Happy Monday Moanin to all of you. Hopefully you experienced a wonderful,  restful weekend. For many of you the 2017-18 school year has either ended or it will very soon. Usually this is not the time of year to ask for feedback because of the overall fatigue of stakeholders. However, you don’t have to use a complex survey to gather information that may help you grow and plan for 2018-19. One of my colleagues, Dr. Cathryn Skedel shared with me an instrument she used a few weeks ago with her staff. She sought feedback for her team as well as a few reflections from staff. It was very doable and not cumbersome for her staff. She also received critical information as she plans for next year. Listed below are some of the statements and questions she used.  Read more

Monday Moanin Thought #299 Memorial Day 2018- Service And Gratitude

Happy Memorial Day 2018 Monday Moanin to all of you. When I think of Memorial Days celebrated in the past, I am reminded of  two common themes. One is service and the other is gratitude. For today’s thoughts, I will focus on gratitude. As I reflect on this day , I am filled with gratitude and awe for all of the men and women that serve on our behalf to ensure the freedom we enjoy. Read more

Monday Moanin Thoughts #298 Final Weeks? Try These Reminders

Happy May 2018 Monday Moanin to everyone. For many of you in the Midwest the final few weeks of the 2017-18 school year are winding down. Congratulations! In my recent meetings with school leaders there are a few common themes I takeaway. Most stakeholders in schools are exhausted, anxious, uncertain, stressed,  and looking forward to a break to recover, renew, and reestablish the passions that have carried them through this year. As I was preparing to write this, I was impressed and motivated by many thoughts and comments that were posted today on Twitter by several of my PLN members.  They are listed below. See if any of these work for you in the closing weeks.   Read more

Monday Moanin Thoughts #297 Happy Mothers Day, Lead Like Mom

Happy Monday Moanin! Yesterday we celebrated  Mother’s Day 2018 and I hope all Mom’s had a special day with their families. Most of us can reflect on how our own mom’s have influenced us as people and leaders. When I think of my mom, I am filled with many examples of how she helped shaped my life and those of my five brothers. Luckily, she still influences all of us  to this day. Rose Hickey is a  95-year-old dynamo. Her gifts are many and she still is the leader of our family. After my dad passed away in 1991, my mom modeled for all of us resiliency and strength.  It was not an easy time, yet she led us through our grief and though missing him, continued to enjoy and live a rewarding, full life. In the past two years,  she has battled many health issues and visits to the hospital and rehab facilities.In November that she moved out of her condo and into a retirement facility.  This morning, my wife and I visited her at her apartment and she is doing well.   When she was in rehab part of her physical therapy for balance, was having putting contests with her PT.  For her gift, we bought her a putter, 3 Pro V’s and new putt return machine. She was having a ball and made several putts. She is amazing and still strong and resilient. Read more

Monday Moanin Thoughts #296 MSU Agribusiness Management Graduate Talks The Three C’s

Happy first Monday Moanin of May 2018 to all of you. This past weekend I attended my daughter Emma’s Commencement Exercises from Michigan State University. My wife and I are so proud of her accomplishments and we are thrilled that she became the third person from our immediate family to be a Spartan graduate. Me in 1977 (ouch), son Paul in 2003 and now Emma in 2018. Read more

Monday Moanin Thoughts #295 The Final Weeks Of School Need ENERGY From All Leaders

Good morning everyone and  welcome to the 295th edition of Monday Moanin Thoughts.  Over the weeks since spring break, I have met with several building administrators to listen and discuss the work they do. I have come away with many impressions and at the top of the list is that administrators are very good at identifying the challenges of their job. If you ask them how things are going, you will hear a steady stream of passion about the challenges they are facing. However, when the conversation shifts towards talking about their highlights, there is usually caution, apprehension, reflection, and then some reluctance  to share.  Why is it that challenges are easy to discuss and highlights are a struggle?  Could it be that challenges tend to be more urgent? Continued focus on challenges and what is not going well can rob leaders of the positive influence they need to lead. It is important to recognize and validate all of the many highlights that occur daily. This spring, make a commitment to provide positive ENERGY  and celebrate all of the good stuff happening in your organization.   Read more

Monday Moanin Thoughts #294 Don’t Forget About Instruction, Finish Strong

Good morning to all of  you wonderful educators on this chilly , icy Michigan 2018  Monday Moanin.   The spring is a challenging time for students to stay focused on their studies. Who is kidding who, it is difficult for adults to stay focused also. As a result, now is a great time to revisit , refocus, and share with each other some instructional  best practices that will help keep the learner focused  on learning and less  on the distractions of springtime. Listed below are some reminders that may help. Teachers,  you may want to consider the following reminders and suggestions.  Read more