Monday, April 18, 2011

7 Reasons Your School Needs P-90X

So I've been working out using P-90X and I can't seem to shake this post from my brain.  If your school is struggling, stale, or has gained a few pounds, maybe it's time to start working out.  Your school needs P-90X.

Reason 1 - You need a focused intervention.
RTI teaches us that an intervention is no good unless its focused, measurable and revisited after a specific period of time.

Does your school need a focused intervention?  This is the time of year where we often are focusing on summer instead of focusing on getting better.  Finishing those last three reps with intensity requires discipline.  Is your school disciplined?  Are you teaching your students to coast through the last few months or PUSH through the burn?  Are you doing it in just your words or are your every day actions showing your discipline?

Reason 2 - You keep doing the same thing.
Your muscles have a memory, you've been doing the same workout the same way for years because it's what you know, what you are comfortable with.  It's time for variety.

P-90X works because its fast paced and changes constantly and it keeps your muscles guessing.  Is your professional development stale?  Are you doing the same old things the same old ways?  Maybe you need to switch it up.  Here's a novel idea: have students plan or teach your profesional development.

Reason 3 - Your Pam is no longer "Blam".
Pam "the Blam" is a inside joke for those people that have seen the DVDs/videos.  She is a lady that works out and could, without question, take me out in an instant.  There is no doubt she works hard and the main instructor recognizes that effort and nick-names her "the blam."

If you could give everyone at your school nicknames, would they be flattering?  Here's a task, take out your faculty directory and nick-name each person.  Now keep it focused on their effort, their work, what you see in and out of their classroom.  Are they closer to "the Blam" or farther away.  Focus your intervention to get the blam back into their teaching.  Do it for the students!

Reason 4 - You've lost your way (and found your weight)
We've all probably gained a few over the winter at some point in our life.  How has your teaching lost it's way?

P-90X gives you a plan to follow and steps to achieve.  It shows you how to differentiate to your readiness with each set/workout.  Meet with colleagues you trust or as a PLC, develop a plan for your friends, colleagues, PLCs, and school to improve and right the ship.  Questions to ask:  What's stale, what's the focus, how do we improve, how do we measure that improvement, how do we differentiate based on readiness?  Finding those answers will make for a more "fit" you and school for next schol year.

Reason 5 - You're focusing on the rest.
A saying often throughout the DVDs is "do your best, and forget the rest."  Listen, I am in NO WAY as fit as they people on the DVDs.  I can't finish most of the workouts at the level they do.  That can be discouraging, but I press on and am getting better.

How often to we focus on the outside stimuli instead of focusing on the best effort we can give.  Testing is over for the year, forget that, focus on your students and make them the best they can possibly be.  Prepare them for the next teacher, the next schol year, focus on them as individuals and tremendous growth will be shown.  Do the best you can every day with each student, individually, and forget all the rest.

Reason 6 -  What data?
After a set the instructor tells you to go over to your paper and write down the set, reps, weight or resistance you used to track your progress as well as your improvement over time.  This personal accountability allows me to see tangible gains and immediate feedback as to whether or not the program is working.

  • At the end of the school year, what data are you looking at?  
  • How often do you look at it?  
  • Why are you looking at it?  
  • What are you looking for?  
  • Are you making connections or looking for causality?  
  • I understand you may not have the data you need right now, but what data have you collected all year?  Why?  
  • What's the point of that collection and what are you going to do with it?  
  • That's the key, so you collected it, so what, what are you going to do with it?  
  • Are you seeing growth?  Should you?  

Now its time to see if programs are working, if they are not, maybe they need to be reevaluated.

Reason 7 - No Pain, No Gain
Listen.  Working out SUCKS, I know.  I'm doing it right now.  It hurts to move, it hurts to breathe :-).  I also know that pain is making improvements on my body, losing 20+ pounds over the last couple months and seeing on paper my strength gains shows me things are improving.

Making changes in a building or with a team is hard, it's going to hurt.  It's going to hurt feelings, relationships, and maybe the systematic running of day-to-day activities.  But if you are diligent, committed to the change, have a reason to do it, and can constantly monitor improvement.  Your goals will be achieved.

Change is hard, working out sucks, but maybe your school needs a workout.

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