August 9, 2012

SUCCESS: Mission Possible

New School Year, New Students, Even a New Room Make-Over
Welcome students and parents to 2012-2013: a year of learning opportunities!

I am always looking for new ideas to engage students in a successful school experience, so when I was asked to read and review Mission Possible: Secrets of the Success, written by Founder and CEO of the Success Academy Charter Schools, Eva Moskowitz, and literacy expert, Arin Lavinia, I was eager.

This is my 20th year teaching middle school students. I have seen incredible changes in education, technology, and society during this time. Stagnation has never been a problem with this age group or profession, so when asked to comment on the following comment, I was at a loss.

 “Stagnation, being unable to accomplish one’s job at a high level, is one of the greatest sources of low teacher morale.  Why do you think this country treats teaching so differently than it does other professions?” 

I believe that there are many reasons a teacher is at times “…unable to accomplish one’s job at a high level…” and the teaching profession is treated differently from other professions. As stated over and over again in Mission Possible, this can change when the education community works together with success as the overall goal.

After reading the book, I am as eager to share some key points in my back to school post. It is my hope that these ideas will ignite thinking and actions within our school community especially among our administrators, teachers, staff, parents, and students.

“Secrets of Success” shared:
  • Keeping students challenged and engaged in learning.
  • Keeping parents informed, involved and engaged in learning.
  • Keeping teachers and administrators trained, prepared and engaged in learning.

I smile knowing, that our school district already knows this “Secret.”
We already focus on all of these points- daily. Can we do better?
Simple answer,  Yes- daily.
  • Teachers must have time and resources to prepare rigorous and passionate lessons.
  • Parents must support and invest in their child’s learning.
  • Students must take advantage of every opportunity with a goal of life-long learning.

Mission Possible shows when everyone focuses on these goals, success happens. I plan to use the last chapter title “Call to Action” as a reminder that I need to continue to make a difference.  
2012-2013 school year has SUCCESS written all over it.

Give Away: An extra copy of Mission Possible was made available to gift to one of my readers. The book also includes a DVD sharing student and teacher interactions shared in the book. I will randomly choosing a winner on August  31st. Simply leave a comment with your email contact information so I can contact the winner.

This sponsored post is part of a campaign presented by Read Mission and the SITS Girls. You can learn more about Mission Possible by following them on Twitter and Facebook. I was compensated for this post.  All opinions expressed are my own.


  1. Good to know - you were compensated for the post, but all opinions are your own. I'd like to put my name in for a copy of the book, especially if it gives us hints on how to keep parents informed. I try and try to do this, but some parents seem oblivious to my efforts. I also think its good to know that the book focuses on just three key points. That will mean it's focused!
    Thanks for the post, compensation or not, it was still informative!
    JoyKirr at gmail dot com.

  2. Great blog!

    - students - challenged and engaged
    - parents - involved
    - teachers- trained, prepared and engaged

    These are vitial components for effect schools. Would love to read how these schools did it.

  3. The book sounds interesting. I'd like to put my name in for the drawing. :)