This semester has brought a word back to my mind on occasion. That word is "persistence." When I think of the teachers I admire most, that is the word that rings through.
As defined on webster.com, persistence is a "to go on resolutely or stubbornly in spite of opposition, importunity, or warning." I think back to my teachers. The ones that I admire today. They were persistent.
With the end of the year quickly approaching, it rings true. I recently listened to a podcast "What To Do On Lame Duck School Days." The podcast and accompanying article features low and high value items to do during "downtime". The ideas feature go beyond the "show a movie" that we have all encountered. Although the list contains some low-value items that don't connect curriculum, there are many ideas on what can filled with educational value.
We have to be persistent in focusing on education until the last day. With summer brain drain on the horizon, we need to make sure that students are pushed until the final day of school. We can't afford to quit on May 1st or once prom is over. We must be persistent in focusing on continued learning. We must be persistent that students behave at high expectations. We must be persistent that students are engaged. To do so, we may have to get more creative this time of year.
Ryan Dumkrieger is the principal of Sioux City North High School.