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The Alabama Best Practices Center works to help teachers and district & school leaders develop the competence, commitment, and courage to do whatever it takes to improve student learning.

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Professional Learning Blog

Leadership: Affirming Our True Power and Finding Our Way in Crisis

Educators are living in an unprecedented situation where they are very likely to feel powerless at times. Cathy Gassenheimer found organizational psychologist Tasha Eurich’s insightful suggestion – that we deliberately recall instances of great personal resilience and so reaffirm our true power – to be restorative. Included: Links to six recent leadership articles you might find helpful.

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School Leaders Can Make or Break Instructional Coaching

When administrators use instructional coaches properly and effectively, writes Enterprise City assistant principal DeAnna Miller, they can watch the culture in their buildings shift to one of positivity and engagement. When they don’t, it can break down the culture, causing mistrust and poor morale among the teachers, coaches, administration and even our students.

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2022: A Daily Reflection Activity Can Ease Stress and Enliven Thinking

When Cathy Gassenheimer began using Tolstoy’s A Calendar of Wisdom as a daily reflection tool in early 2021, we were hopeful that the world might soon return to normal. “Alas, the wild ride has continued,” she writes. What better time to recommend the habit of daily devotional reading? Cathy includes some education-friendly choices to consider.

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2022: How We Can Become Wiser and More Compassionate

Dr. Dilip Jeste, author of “Wiser: The Scientific Roots of Wisdom, Compassion, and What Makes Us Good” says we are mistaken if we think that by simply growing older we become wiser. Instead, the path to wisdom begins when we realize how much we do not know and become active seekers and listeners. Cathy Gassenheimer shares five ideas from the book we can practice in the year ahead.

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