Library of Just for the ASKing!

bruceJust for the ASKing! is a monthly e-newsletter that addresses the needs of all those who strive to be instructional leaders. Authored by Just ASK Senior Consultant, Bruce Oliver, each issue provides information that can provide immediate food for thought and serve as a resource in promoting professional learning in faculty meetings, collaborative teams, and coaching and supervisory sessions. The over 150 issues available in the library are organized into focus areas that are on your mind right now. Feel free to reproduce this e-newsletter for non-commercial use.

Bruce Oliver, the author of Just for the ASKing!, lives in Fairfax County, Virginia, where he was a teacher, a professional developer, and a highly acclaimed 16-year middle school principal. He is also the author of Points to Ponder and a co-author of Creating a Culture for LearningYour Guide to PLCs and More. In addition to his publications, Bruce has led workshops in several states including Arizona, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, North Carolina, New Jersey, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington, D.C., and Wisconsin and made presentations at multiple state and national conferences.


 Current Issue – Stop… in the Name of Learning 2.0
(18 Practices to Rethink)

Several years ago I wrote a issue of Just for the ASKing! titled “Stop… in the Name of Learning.” The content was based on classroom observations I had made over time as a principal and professional developer and on conversations about practices that teachers shared during workshops. Sometimes ways of thinking, routines, and practices surfaced that were not always in the best interest of learning.

In 2020 we are dealing with new realities so I decided to resurrect the original concept with a focus on teaching and learning in the age of Covid-19. Given our hectic lives, it is no surprise that we do not ask ourselves often enough if our actions are high leverage choices for promoting student learning. The pandemic-induced turmoil we are now experiencing provides both a mandate and an opportunity to think about how to best move forward and, as we do so, consider which of our practices need to be revisited as we make instructional plans for the future. In this 2.0 issue I offer alternatives to consider. I hope that these observations and recommendations will result in discussions, debates, and most importantly, deliberate decisions that better support student learning. Read on to investigate the possibilities!


Just ASK Opening of School Checklist

The Just ASK Opening of School Checklist is by far the most popular issue of Just for the ASKing! This annual issue enumerates the actions that need to happen before students arrive for the first day of school and for the first weeks of school. Download and print this checklist to keep track of task completion.


Just ASK Closing of School Checklist

This annual checklist builds on the extraordinary popularity of our Opening of School Checklist. It provides a list of tasks that can help you end the school year on a positive note. 

2020 Special Edition Closing of School – What Do We Do Now? 


Just for the ASKing! Issues are filed in these areas of focus:


Instructional Leadership

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 Creating a Culture for Learning

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Best Practice in Instruction

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 Making Assessment a Learning Experience

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Meeting the Needs of Diverse Learners

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