Friday, January 10, 2014

Snowmageddon or The Locker Room

Last weekend, my son's hockey team that I coach was in St. Louis.  And a storm was coming.  Sunday morning was a mess.  The whole city under snow.  Blizzard conditions.  Talk of I55 already being closed in parts.  Of course, we couldn't leave until after our 10AM game against a team we have never beaten in 5 years.  Just take it.  So, we went to the game and played it with the kids calling out Snowmageddon! in the locker room.

Of course, I55 was closed by the time we got to Litchfield.  I received the call that school would be closed, secured a hotel room and finally had a chance to relax - and enjoy.  Once I stopped fighting the weather, I was able to appreciate the beauty and reflect on the morning.

For the first time in 5 years of playing this team, our 14 year olds beat the top team from St Louis.  3-2.  Certainly not a blow out, but a real win where we all played well.  We used to get blown out by this team.  Last year, actually gave them a decent run once.  Saturday, lost 2-5, but you could see the gap was closing.  Here we were in Litchfield with an extra day of the trip with my son, pizza and soda in the hotel, decent movie on tv, and fond thoughts of the morning.  What a great day.

We measure growth by comparison.  The gap had been closing and finally overcome.  This week and next our students are taking MAP assessments.  Perhaps some would rather skip over it, just get on the highway and move on, but like the boys' challenge Sunday morning being worth the effort, so is MAP assessment.  We measure student growth, meeting their goals, and a measure with national performance.  The data is used by teachers to specifically target instruction and help each student succeed.  Setting aside time to help each student be successful is always worth the effort.    

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