Author: Todd Nesloney
Publisher: Dave Burgess Consulting, Inc.
Published on: January 5, 2018
“Education isn’t just a job; it’s a calling. It’s a role that comes with the responsibility to care deeply and to persist despite countless challenges–from state testing to budget cuts to long hours. It’s a way of life that rewards us with milestone moments and fills us with pride for the children and communities we serve.
Stories from Webb goes right to the heart of education. Told by award-winning principal Todd Nesloney and his dedicated team of staff and teachers at Webb Elementary, this book will remind you why you became an educator. You’ll be reinvigorated by these relatable stories–and you just may be inspired to tell your own!”
- Stories: Storytelling has always been a powerful strategy in teaching and learning. As we hear stories, we make connections with our own lives. We are able to connect with others as we recognize the emotions, both of struggle and triumph, that we all experience. This is exactly the case in Stories from Webb, as each of these educators share their stories. Some vulnerably share their struggles and how they didn’t succumb to them but grew through them. Others share in how they gave all they could, knowing that sometimes we can only do so much and may never see the fruit of our labor. We not only hear stories from teachers but from the many staff members who keep a school running, as well as the family members who stand behind us as educators. Storytelling is the heart of this book, and Nesloney masterfully ties the stories together through narration.
- Inspiration: When I finished this book, the one word that kept coming to mind was that I felt so inspired! As educators we know that we often get lost in the day to day and are worn down from giving all that we have to be the best that we can be for our students. Each of these stories will ignite a passion in you to grow as an educator and to not lose sight of your calling.
- School Culture: As I read the many stories, I felt as though I had met each of these educators and been right there with them at Webb. And let me tell you, it sounds like an amazing place to be! These educators conveyed the culture of Webb beautifully, one of high expectations, a culture of learning and growth, a family mentality, and unconditional love. To be honest, it reminded me a lot of my amazing campus, and if it doesn’t remind you of your campus, it will definitely inspire you to build this type of culture at your own school. It only takes one person to start a ripple!
- Ideas: While many of the stories are inspirational in nature, there are also many stories that tell of new and innovative ideas implemented at Webb. Some of these were ideas that Nesloney brought to the table. Many were ideas that the teachers themselves came up with, and the entire campus embraced them and ran with it! I found some ideas that were not new to me, but I still want to try, as well as information that was completely new to me. My biggest takeaway was the concept of Classroom Champions. This is an amazing way to help your students make connections outside their community. While you can find more information at the Classroom Champions website, you have to read more about it in this book and see how the teachers at Webb put it into action! Whether you are reading this book just to be inspired or looking for new ideas to implement on your campus and in your classroom, you will definitely walk away with something new to try!
- Teacher Voice: I saved this one for last because I feel this is one of the most important aspects of the book. This books puts faces and names to educators. Education is all over the news and in politics, and everyone seems to have an opinion about education (whether they’ve ever actually been in the schools). Education is comprised of state education agencies, which are comprised of school districts, which are comprised of schools, which are comprised of educators, the people who are in the trenches every day, working tirelessly for our kids. Each of these educators are real people, with real stories, whose only goal is to make a difference in the lives of their students, and they deserve to have their voice heard!
Have you read Stories from Webb yet? What did you think?
If you want to find out more about Todd Nesloney and Webb Elementary, be sure to check out his website!