The delicate balance of mentoring someone is not creating them in your own image, but giving them the opportunity to create themselves.”

Steven Spielberg

I love the quote by Steven Spielberg. Mentoring is so meaningful and is so rewarding for those involved. As mentoring begins, it is a foundation built on trust, honesty, authenticity, and raw, real stuff.

The best mentors listen carefully and hear what is not said to shine the light on what is not seen. Hope, talent, strength, and courage are hidden in the layers of doubt, uncertainty, and fear.

Mentors create opportunities to tell, explain, and demonstrate, but most importantly, inspire those they work with to see what they can be. It is about guidance and facilitation of development.


Coaching is a broad term today and is found in many areas and professions. We are coaching in sports, as coaches work with teams to capture titles in baseball, basketball, football, hockey, golf, tennis, and so much more. We see coaching in our personal lives as we may have life coaches to help us with emotional, nutrition or physical needs. In addition, we have coaching for child delivery in finding the best ways to bring our child into the world.

Today coaching is part of what we do to help everyone grow and to be better than they are today.

“A coach is someone who (1) sees what others may not see through the high quality of his or her attention or listening, (2) is in the position to step back (or invite participants to step back) from the situation so that they have enough distance from it to get some perspective, (3) helps people see the difference between their intentions and their thinking or actions, and (4) helps people cut through patterns of illusion and self-deception caused by defensive thinking and behavior.”~Robert Hargrove, author of Masterful Coaching


What Adults need

Mentoring or Coaching adults need a different approach to learning. Building a relationship is the first step, and the next step in the relationship is built on trust. In addition, trust is essential in the relationship, but also having permission.

A coach brings continuing support to the individual. It is a safe and confidential relationship of trust to nurture significant growth in the areas of personal and professional. In addition, the building of a strong foundation of skills to support the organization to meet the needs set to achieve success.

I saw a post in an educational group about teachers and administrators calling it quits sooner than later. Some threw in the towel just last week.

I sent a response back with what are the specifics leading to all of these withdrawals so quickly. I did not get a reply back; I am not out of touch, and I do not know many of the issues they all face, but I wanted details. I wanted to know the following:

I have so many questions and discussions I want to have. Why do I want to have them? Because I want to know what I can do to help. As a former teacher and principal, I see the quality of educators I have worked with daily. We had some that were not the best, but we also had extraordinary ones as well. Losing these individuals who know precisely how to teach any child to read is crushing. I have seen teachers work with students who others had no success with before. I enjoyed being in their classrooms.

This I know: People need to hear what they do matters; others understand and want to support them. We must keep the schools that are doing great things for our children. Talk to the school principal and see what you can do to help them and show support. Lift instead of pushing down. Do we have problems in education? Yes! We do. Let’s fix them.

Teaching civics should entail our political, social, and economic systems. It is essential to teach our students about their rights and responsibilities as citizens. In addition, helping to provide students with ways they can engage with the political process through voting, service, and volunteering. Tuesday, November 8, 2022, is Election Day, and I am writing this post on that date. I hope we are teaching students about the process without biases. We teach children how to think, not what to think.

In the article, I read, “not even one-fourth of teachers rank knowledge of political and civic institutions as a top-three concern. Does not even half think promoting knowledge of citizens’ rights and responsibilities makes the top three?! Barely 1 in 10 think it’s important that students be able to articulate their beliefs?”

The information in the article has a couple more data points I find alarming. It mentions that only 26 percent of Americans can name the three branches of our government, and 1 of 3 Americans can pass the citizenship test.


Our school days are packed with many things we require teachers to teach, and a yearly report is published to demonstrate where students are regarding their learning. Class sizes, in many cases, are large, resources in many locations are limited, and shortages in certified staff have intensified over the last several years.

Student needs have changed. Our families have changed. The communities in which students and families reside have changed. Schools have also changed regarding the items previously stated and more.


Take a step back and look at the school day. Look at the results of the core foundational skills students need to grow in a fast-paced environment of continuous learning, change and growth. If our students are not reading or doing math at grade level, we have failed them. Students must work in reading and math at or above grade-level standards. When I state we have failed them, it does not rest on the shoulders of education alone. Families, students, and communities share this responsibility as well.

Reading and Math are the two basic foundational skills in their educational journey. Thinking critically is an important skill and is utilized a great deal in many areas, but Science is one area it finds to be a place to practice. Social Studies is where at an early age, Civics and Citizenship can begin to be introduced. This skill set does not have to wait until a class in high school to start to have a love for the country, understand how it works, and begin to appreciate what we have.


It is easy to point out a problem, identify an individual or group to blame, and then throw a solution to “fix it.” However, we have repeated this cycle many decades before, and the results are clear today. Generations have now progressed through a system of schools, families, and communities that have not prioritized the importance of the problems identified. We have placed patches on things to get us through another election cycle.

Reflect for a few moments on what you have just read.


Politicized is the word I have used to describe education for over a decade. It probably has been this way longer; it just took me longer to realize. Politics plays a role in all areas, like our families and communities. I am seeing it come between families and friends; communities are suffering from violence and crime.

It is past the time for everyone to stop seeking more power, looking to see which party is better than the other, and decide the United States is worth working together to improve all of our areas so we can overcome all of the shortcomings we have currently so we can build up, make up and stand up for our foundation together. Get involved in a positive way—volunteer at schools, community groups, and churches and help to build up. Make up where skills, needs, and supports are wanted by giving monetary donations, food, clothing, or time. Stand up to voice your opinion on issues, beliefs, and values that are important to you by writing letters, articles, and blogs and calling and emails to politicians and media outlets.

Together we can, United we are, The United States of America.

Welcome to Daylight Savings Time

Hopefully everyone remembered to fall back! Clocks changed today!

I am the Lord, the God of every person on the earth. Nothing is impossible for Me.—

Jeremiah 32:27

Gratitude Brings-Great Things

The month of November is a time we think of “Gratitude” and “Thanksgiving.” What does “thank you” mean?

If we take a little time this week to look into “Gratitude,” “Thanksgiving,” and “Thank You,” we can discover how often it is used in our daily lives and the lives of others. What does it mean in our lives?

We have layers

While talking with several different people from my past over the past week, I discovered the many layers we all have. I wanted every person to share with me their stories and memories of their professional educational journey.

Memories are important to me for many reasons. As an individual suffering from a TBI, I have been told by many doctors of the possibility of developing dementia and Alzheimer’s. At the time of the injury, memories were already taken, and working each day to keep what I have is important.

Let’s learn more about the layers we have.


The delicate balance of mentoring someone is not creating them in your own image, but giving them the opportunity to create themselves.”

Steven Spielberg

Mentoring and Coaching

In my professional opinion, I strongly believe in mentoring and coaching all members of education. As an individual who began her career in education as a teaching assistant, I received mentoring and coaching. Those were informal and formal programs over my years in education.

As a leader, I have been blessed to have opportunities to mentor and coach at all levels. I love doing both! Giving back to others is so rewarding and watching them grow is amazing. Mentors share knowledge and experience and help mentees develop and grow. Coaching provides guidance one-on-one for particular goals established over a period of time.

Teaching, Learning, Building-Hope

Teaching and learning are being looked at today in many different ways. While talking with seasoned teachers this past week, the conversation turned to how teaching changed over the years, and the joy of teaching was taken away when No Child Left Behind legislation was passed. Many mandates and regulations shifted education, and it cut into teaching. Instead of teachers designing and connecting, they were told what, how, and when to teach.

Listening to them tell me their stories over time and then talking about what is happening in the classrooms today, I could hear the frustration from teachers and students. Building hope is needed. How can we support education?

Thank You Veterans!

November 11, 2022

We thank all who have served to keep us safe and free to all who are serving today to stand up for life, liberty, and the U.S A. To those who have lost their lives or suffered in other ways, one day is not enough for all of us to say; God Bless you and your families for all you have given we can never repay. Thank you.

November 6th is the day that marks the time to fall back! So tonight set your clocks back one hour.

“A push in the U.S. Congress to make daylight-saving time permanent, which was unanimously passed by the Senate earlier this year, has stalled in the House, with a key lawmaker telling Reuters they have been unable to reach consensus.

In March, the Senate voted to put a stop next year to the twice-annual changing of clocks, which supporters say will lead to brighter afternoons and more economic activity.”


Don’t be late to school or work! Monday will come an hour earlier than expected!

For with much wisdom comes much sorrow; the more knowledge, the more grief.

Ecclesiastes 1:

Have you ever thought you know too much? It seems like a crazy question to ask and to think about, but something to ponder for a moment or two. Here is why I think it is something to investigate.

As a child, many could be unaware of so many things in the world when I was growing up. However, today more and more of the protected unknowns are finding their way into the lives of everyone, from young to old.


The rise in stress, anxiety, and depression in all age groups could be connected to this knowledge. It is a thought worth thinking about. How much of the world's negativity are we welcoming into our lives freely without questions? As adults, are we fearful of shutting out those things threatening the values, beliefs, and the core of the authenticity of what our families stand for today?

Shutting out the negative noise of the world is something we can do from time to time. We are helping to establish a time to discuss appropriately as a family what is heard, seen, and the perceptions of what is happening. Provide a balance of encouragement to answer questions to understand and to help guide children with the foundation of the family.


Knowledge

Knowledge is vital to all of us. We need to be informed and understand what is happening in the world in which we live. Having a true whole picture of balance with each issue is what is needed for the depth of understanding we need. Providing our children and others with short little bits of informational headlines repeated can instill fear, uncertainty, stress, anxiety, and depression, to name a few.

Having time to sit down to talk about issues and helping others feel good and safe will relieve many of the symptoms of uncertainty placed on individuals. Knowledge can help us grow if the learning is meaningful and authentic.

What do you want to know? How will you gain the knowledge you seek? What will you do when you learn the answer? Help children feel safe to ask questions at home they want and need to have answers to. Open communication with a listening ear is essential and not a judgmental one. Help them see, hear and learn from you the questions the seek yo understand.

Chaos seems to be a word to capture moments in our life and society. Christmas comes to mind when the family is crowded in the festivity of celebrating, and if you have just a moment to step back to look, it is fantastic!

Fall is the time we can notice the changes happening all around us. I love the illustration above with the little girl looking up in wonderment. The seeds scatter to find a place to land in hopes of sprouting to grow.

Throughout all of the chaos of the world, many little things are happening each day to add up to make significant changes. Add your positive impact each day.

"I only have 2 rules!"
© 2023 Brenda Yoho
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