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Modeling Assertiveness With Students

Quote from Article:

Assertiveness is a key concept in social and emotional learning and represents the middle ground between the extremes of aggression and passivity. When people behave aggressively, they prioritize their own needs and may use threats to get what they want. When people behave passively, they do things they don’t want to do because they feel pressured or threatened by others. 

But when people behave assertively, they stand up for themselves without diminishing or hurting others. In other words, they’re strong, not mean.

Assertive communication is a hard skill to learn. Our culture tends to reward aggression. Putdowns are framed as humor in cartoons and sitcoms, and the internet can be a platform for bullying. It’s hard to find examples of assertiveness in the public sphere.

What does assertive communication look like and sound like in real life? How can we resist the pull of aggressive or passive choices, which may be easier in the moment but don’t solve our problems in the long run? How can we get our needs met without hurting others?


  • The “nice no”
  • Setting a boundary
  • Asking for some thinking time
  • Stating your needs
  • Using an “I feel” message
  • Knowing how to respond to aggression

District Deeds Synopsis:

In over 15 years of parenting in the San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD), my children have been given only one instruction when dealing with a bully at their school:

Tell an adult.

In other words, don’t address the bully with a strategy to deal with the issue, just retreat.

This article gives both Teachers and Parents guidance on how to deal with conflicts at school in an assertive and positive way.  A great read for ALL SDUSD Stakeholders!

Can Creativity be Taught?

Quote from Article:

Time and time again, I’ve run into students who have very fixed mindsets about creativity. According to them, either they are creative or they aren’t and most of them can’t remember a time when they thought any differently. This fixed mindset should be making all educators nervous. Why? Education right now is experiencing a strange mingling of philosophies, converging on our students with complicated implications. Differentiation, personalized learning, blended learning, the rise of technology, etc., are all emerging as the new normal, but standardized testing and a mandated set of “college and career ready” skills and competencies loom large. How can we prepare our students for this juxtaposition of expectations?

I’ve been making pretty dramatic changes to my classroom in the last five years as a result of embracing Project Based Learning, Differentiation, and Social and Emotional Learning. Creativity has become more relevant as I watch the technological landscape decimate the need for memorization. If not content, since it can be so easily accessed, how can I prepare my students to be their best selves? I found my answer within the Partnership for 21st Century Learning.  I think most educators know how to teach critical thinking, collaboration and communication, but what about the elusive creativity? Can it even be taught? As National Board Certified teachers, it is always important to reflect on what we are doing and examine it in light of research, as Proposition Four states: Teachers think systematically about their practice and learn from experience.

Here are three tips he had for educators about Creativity:

  • Challenge students to re-think the problem
  • Watch how we use language
  • Teach students how to think divergently

District Deeds Synopsis:

We were fascinated with the concepts explored in this article.  In the SDUSD we have been bombarded with 3 of the 4 “C’s”: Critical Thinking, Collaboration and Communication.  It seems like these three words are spouted at every Board Meeting, and every “State of the District” propaganda address.

With the current incompetent leadership by SDUSD Supt. Marten, the 4th “C”, Creativity, has been relegated to a disjointed propaganda effort integrating the Arts into SDUSD school sites.  This article shows how Creativity can truly be integrated into ALL SDUSD classrooms.  Check it out!

Be Cautious with Polls that Measure “Parent Opinion”

Quote from Article:

Here’s the problem, though. Many polls ask regular people about complex policy issues that are distant from their daily lives. Take two recent polls on education by Education Next and Phi Delta Kappan. Each was dissected, written up, and commented upon widely. Commentators paid particular attention to the level of support for hot-button issues like charter schools, vouchers, testing, Common Core, and so on.

But does this mean we now know what parents really think? I am doubtful that is the case.

Both polls include members of the general public, with “oversamples” of parents and teachers in the Ed Next version. Put another way, both polls include lots of people who do not actually have school-aged children in their homes and are unlikely to have any direct experience with the issues in question. It’s like asking me what I think about new safety standards for sailboats; I can state an opinion, but since the only boat I have is in my kids’ bathtub, I’m probably not the best person to ask.

District Deeds Synopsis:

The SDUSD Propaganda Department, guided by corrupt leadership, uses Polls in many ways…

Some SDUSD Palls are used to create a false perception of community outreach…like we described in “FINAL 2016/17 BOARD MEETING DISASTER DUMP: Part 3: School Calendar Jammed Down Stakeholders Throats” where even though over 60% of SDUSD Stakeholders voted against the calendar change, Marten and the Board ignored them all.

Some SDUSD Polls, like the recent 7 day 2018 Budget Poll is used to force SDUSD Stakeholders to share the blame for the most recent financial mismanagement disaster caused by Supt. Cindy Marten and her Board of Education cronies: Richard “Tricky Dick” Barrera, Kevin “Dismissal with Prejudice” Beiser, John “You Can’t Handle the Truth” Evans, Michael “Foggy Bottom” McQuary and Sharon “Flying By The Seat of Our Pants” Payne.

District Deeds hopes that this article will help inspire our readers to disregard the phony public relations poll “gimmicks” by the corrupt SDUSD leadership and hold them fully accountable for their budgeting mismanagement.

Now for our Quote of the Week:

Leaders are responsible not for running public opinion polls but for the consequences of their actions. – Henry Kissinger


Have a great week!!!



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