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Springtime Treasures

In the Spring 2021 Mentoring Memo Paula writes, “Daffodils, cherry blossoms, forsythia, tulips, azaleas, and camellias are coming to life. What a wonderful time of the year. We add to this wide array of beautiful flowers beautiful words from twenty of the quotes Marcia Baldanza, author of EmpowerED 3.2.1 and Professional Practices, has featured in 2020-2021 issues of EmpowerED 3.2.1. (See the extensive archives on the Just ASK website.)

Whatever your role, select a quote each week to share with administrators, colleagues, novice teachers, and/or parents. All these quotes are thought-provoking and inspirational. You can’t go wrong!

Also included in this month’s memo is a Special Edition of the Spring 2021 Mentoring Calendar. The timing of spring breaks and testing across the country made it necessary to have a lengthy calendar this month. Take a look and see which suggestions fit your school/district calendar.”

Access the Spring 2021 Mentoring Memo, Springtime Treasures.



The More the Merrier
Levity with Brevity – Part II

In this issue Bruce writes, “Many teachers wake up thinking about the day ahead. From the moment they log onto their computers, they are on! They do not know if their plan will work or if their students will respond. It is serious business day after day.

During the pandemic much of the literature has focused on the negative aspects of the last year. As I pointed out in Levity with Brevity – Part I, I watch for light-hearted posts that make me smile and keep a log if items that I find particularly humorous. In a recent gathering of educator friends, I handed out a draft of the pieces I had collected to see what their reaction would be. What began as quiet silent reading soon erupted into loud laugher. As I watched and listened to their reactions, I realized that there is no such things as too much joviality! Enjoy the brief tidbits in this month’s issue and share them with your colleagues, family, and friends.” Read the latest issue

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    The Just ASK Special Edition
            Spring 2021 Mentoring Calendar

Each issue of The Mentoring Memo features one or more mentoring calendars for the current time of the year. The Just ASK Special Edition Spring 2021 Mentoring Calendar is now available. These calendars, excerpted and updated from The 21st Century Mentor’s Handbook, offer suggestions for mentoring actions to support novice teachers and teachers new to the district. When you take a look at them, you will quickly see how useful they are.  Post them, or a link to them, on your district/school website and feel free to forward the calendars to colleagues who you think might find them useful. You are also encouraged to post them on social media.

Download the Spring  2021 Calendar




Communicating with Students

The  issue of EmpowerED 3.2.1 titled “Communicating with Students” is now available. Marcia writes “Here we are, one year of living the consequences of a global health crisis. Like most of you with children, my teenager is in remote school in his bedroom. Like most of you we haven’t seen family and friends. Like most of you, I have sent more sympathy cards in these months than I have my entire life. Like most of you, I know good people who have died of COVID or of complications due to the chronic shutdown. In fact, I am going to pause this writing to attend a Zoom funeral (my fourth since March 2020) and will return later. We continue to grapple with COVID and its new variants; who, when, and where we’ll be vaccinated; unemployment (mostly of mothers) and its affects; the devastating data on learning; and the irreparable effects on the social-emotional well-being of our young people; and a host of other challenges. One thing we can do for our families and students is to communicate that we care about them, communicate that we understand them, and communicate that we love them again and again. I am reminded of some communication basics and share them here.” Read now!

Access the archives and subscribe to EmpowerED 3.2.1


Planning and Teaching Mini-lessons

Heather writes, “Whether instruction is delivered in person, in a hybrid model, or remotely, it is important for our students is experience predictable structure with clear expectations and routines. When there are established structures, routines, and procedures in place, teachers can focus on teaching, assessing, and coaching students and students can spend their time in productive ways with sustained attention on reading writing, and thinking at higher levels. One way to do this is through carefully constructed and thoughtfully executed mini-lessons. ” Read this issue now!

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Distance Learning Collection

The Just ASK Team has written new articles and updated some older ones as 2.0 versions to support our many colleagues who are currently tasked with creating positive and productive learning experiences from a distance and/or in hybrid environments that are ever evolving. Feel free to share with colleagues near and far. Check back often to access newly posted articles. 

Click here to access the collection




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