#HamstraHighlights

Leadership · Curriculum · STEM

#HamstraHighlights
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Category: NCSSE 4-Human Resource Leadership

Passion Projects Are Personal Investments

Recently, I was in another Voxer group chat that really pushed my thinking. The premise went something like this: When you’re interacting with other educators on your team, your staff, or even in an interview, should you share anything about your passion projects? At first, I was taken aback. I Read more…


Book Review: The Gifts of Imperfections

Hello, Friends. Greetings to you from the depths of discomfort. Once a fierce fighter in a frenzy of frustration, I now sit down silently beside you as an unfinished puzzle with all the pieces under the microscope. Not a masterpiece in the making, but learning to master the making, unmaking, Read more…


How Do You Archive?

Hello, Friends! With all the things that happen, it’s easy to forget a few precious moments. If you’re an educator who “makes a thousand decisions a day,” then there’s a pretty good chance that you forgot what you wore yesterday. Wait–What day was yesterday again? In addition, it’s easy to Read more…


Podcasts for Professional Learning

Hello, Friends! There’s nothing better than a great conversation with educators! For me, nearly every walk, run, workout, or commute is another opportunity to hear a great podcast. Almost like a cup of coffee together, nothing beats feeling inspired, provoked, or so moved by a few educator stories, passions, and Read more…


The Interview of a Lifetime

About ten years into my career, I was nominated for a major award in my district. Several other educators were also nominated, and I knew that the candidate field was strong. I can’t begin to express how honored and excited I was to make it to the final round! At Read more…


Alone Together Reflection: Deep–Then Wide

Upon entering another staff meeting, online space, or professional development session later in the 2020-2021 school year, no one says a word. Complete silence. Silence to think and process. Silence to reflect and learn. Silence to pause and feel this moment.  At the front of the room, there’s one prompt: Read more…


My #OneWord2021: Connect

Dear Friends, My one word declaration didn’t go so well this year. I guess, after all the things learned and experienced in 2020, I just didn’t have it in me this time. So much has changed. The world and our nation have changed. Our way of life has changed. I Read more…


Crowd Noise Matters

After nestling through shelter-in-place and extended COVID life for nearly a year, I’m reflecting on another gamechanger. Maybe like many others this year, I found myself with more opportunities to get closer to my family… and closer to my devices. For better or for worse, one of those devices was Read more…


What’s Your Inspiration Date?

Over the last few years, I must have been a listening ear (or a confident activator) in about 100 conversations related to… Your Expiration Date. The conversation goes something like this: Classroom teachers are extremely overworked, under-paid, under-valued, and under-appreciated, to say the least. Classroom teachers have the most interactions Read more…


Trustworthy Leadership

Here’s one more takeaway from the historical 2020 presidential election: One candidate touted his record of success, yet his character came into question after repeatedly spewing divisive, mean-spirited rhetoric. One candidate touted his unifying, empathetic character, yet his policy record, platform rollout, and resulting success remain to be seen. In Read more…


A Time to Listen

If I’ve learned anything in 2020, it’s the power of listening. I’m constantly working on being a better listener, myself, but in this reflection, I want to zoom out for just a moment… Whether it be amidst a global pandemic, demonstrations of civil unrest, an election season vehemently vile with Read more…


Shark Tank

I love the show: Shark Tank. There’s nothing better than watching people take a risk to see if they can make a match. Does each side have what it takes to help the team build a dynasty? Do they have the winning combination to sustain long-term success? While I haven’t Read more…


Dear Netflix

Dear Netflix, Greetings to you from an inquisitive educator. With COVID-19 circulating the globe, the world will never be the same. I’m wondering if now is the time to embrace change. I’m wondering if now is the time we move forward into a new frontier. I’m wondering if now is Read more…


Upon Reflection: The Best PD

The very last thing anyone wants in the year of all-things-2020, and when trying to reopen schools amidst a global pandemic, is to add… One. More. Thing. So let’s not. Let’s not invest in expensive PD. Let’s not invest in all of the shiny new objects. Let’s not invest in Read more…


Today is for Us: Daddy! Hold My Hand!

There’s a lot going on. Honestly, I haven’t taken a break in… years. I just completed my MSA journey, and the very certain uncertainty of one global pandemic has held us all captive, moment-by-moment, since March, 2020. Sometimes, it’s hard to know: What’s the right thing to do? Still three Read more…


Book Review: White Fragility–Part III

Blogger’s Note: This is Part III in a series of personal reflections on the book: White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism. While it’s imperative to reread, revisit, and reference the entire book, frequently, I’m citing just a few selections that are especially impacting my Read more…


Are You an Instructional Leader?

The phrase “instructional leader” can mean a lot of things. Like many titles, it can take on different meanings, given our unique perspectives. Yet, the perception begins to contrast sharply when comparing instructional leadership from the role of school administrators versus classroom teachers. Personally, I’ve been a listening ear to Read more…


Microteaching for Macrolearning

I just got out of another district training and I can’t wait to share this one thing from our study today. While diving deeper into the PLC+ Model, we explored this concept of Microteaching: “We believe that the day is coming in which microteaching, using clips of video to discuss Read more…