I was very excited to be able to review Mission Possible. I heard about Eva Moskowitz and Arin Lavinia and the Success Academy Charter School. Having children in a struggling public school I couldn’t wait to learn more.
Although I am only a school nurse, I couldn’t wait to see the outcome of this book. How can we fix our public schools?
A charter school in Harlem became one of the top schools in New York in just 3 years. The Success Academies operate from the simple notion that principals and teachers—the adults—hold the keys to educational excellence. So when teachers set high standards for themselves, it flows down to the students.
I love the passage on Miss Obiaya. She is a first grade teacher. She wanted her students to put their thumb up in their lap if they knew something besides humans that have skeletons. Then she partnered the kids up and had them talk about their answers. When she called on the students who were wiggling their fingers to share their answers. They would start, “my partner said…” I love this concept. As a young student I was painfully shy and always feared being called on. I was also a fast reader and the teachers always doubted that I could already be done and would then interogate me. I always knew the answers but still have anxiety today about being called upon instead of volunteering.
The companion dvd shows tips and interviews illustrating how any school can be transformed. I plan on sharing this information at our first PTAmeeting of the year and also sharing the book with our principal now that I am finished reading it.
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“I was compensated for this post. All opinions expressed are my own.”