Every summer my wife and I plant a number of flower pots for our backyard. When the start to bloom it’s spectacular. But as the summer progresses, the beautiful blooms begin to wither and die. It’s not too noticeable at first but eventually, there are more dead blooms than live.


The plants don’t look so great. That’s why, each day, during our morning routine in the backyard, we take a few moments to Dead-Head the blooms – remove the dead blooms so that new blooms can grow in their place.

It keeps the plant looking alive and fresh.

It helps encourage growth and renewal.

Do You Dead-Head Your Practices?

When I began as an administrator, I jumped right in. I didn’t take stock of my routines or the habits I had acquired as a teacher and decide if they’d work now. Some of them did but there were many that eventually died and were replaced. One such routine/habit was my use of a paper Day Planner. I kept up my subscription to receive a new planner for a number of years after I became an administrator when I wasn’t really using it. Instead, feeling guilty, I would double my work instead of getting rid of it.  If I had taken the time to be proactive, I might have been able to remove this and other habits and routines without them continuing to hang around long after they were useful.

Do You Make Room for New Habits, Practices and Routines?

How often do you take the time to look at your practices, habits, and routines and remove the ones that are no longer blooming?

In your classroom, do you take the time to remove those practices and routines that are dying or dead?

With your students, do you help them to take the time to review what they are doing and remove habits or routines that are no longer productive and encourage new ones?

As an administrator, are there routines and habits that no longer produce? Do you build time into your routine to review these and remove the those no longer productive?

Allow New Blooms to Grow

Like the flowers in the backyard, we can wait for nature to take its course but, if we actively take the time to remove the dead blooms, we encourage new blooms to begin and grow without having all the dead blooms just hanging around.

In the same way, if we review our routines and practices, those habits, routines, and practices that no longer are blooming can be removed and we can encourage new ones to take their place.

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