Bernard’s Library – Resources

GrandpaBernard’s Library is dedicated to my wonderful grandfather: Dr. B. P. Bernard.  He was a huge believer in reading daily.  So I continue his legacy of sharing information with others.

Resources for Students

App: Khana Academy
I’ve seen lots of lists that identify the characteristics of good teachers. They’re great reminders of what we should aspire to be as teachers. I haven’t seen many corresponding lists that identify the characteristics of good learners. I decided to put one together and invite your input. This could be a list for our students or anybody who aspires to learn well.
  1. Good learners are curious
  2. Good learners pursue understanding diligently
  3. Good learners recognize that a lot of learning isn’t fun
  4. Failure frightens good learners, but they know it’s beneficial
  5. Good learners make knowledge their own
  6. Good learners never run out of questions
  7. Good learners share what they’ve learned


Resources for Parents

Book: The Whole-Brain Child by Daniel J. Siegel

The Whole-Brain Child by Daniel J Siegel
“My teacher hates me!” If you’ve heard this phrase a few times and your child seems to be struggling, it can have a serious effect on his learning. Even if he and the teacher don’t click, there are things you can do to improve the situation and open up communication.
  • Stay positive!
  • Listen carefully.
  • Brainstorm solutions together.
  • Observe the situation.
  • Talk to the teacher.
  • Connect with the classroom.
  • If necessary, meet with the principal.
  • If nothing else works, request your child be moved.

Resources for Educators


Book: Struggling Readers Interventions that Work by J. David Cooper
struggling reader
App: Easy Learning
Years ago, as a young, eager student, I would have told you that a great teacher was someone who provided classroom entertainment and gave very little homework. Needless to say, after many years of K-12 administrative experience and giving hundreds of teacher evaluations, my perspective has changed. My current position as a professor in higher education gives me the opportunity to share what I have learned with current and future school leaders, and allows for some lively discussions among my graduate students in terms of what it means to be a great teacher. . .
  1. A great teacher respects students.
  2. A great teacher creates a sense of community and belonging in the classroom.
  3. A great teacher is warm, accessible, enthusiastic and caring.
  4. A great teacher sets high expectations for all students.
  5. A great teacher has his own love of learning
  6. A great teacher is a skilled leader.
  7. A great teacher can “shift-gears”
  8. A great teacher collaborates with colleagues on an ongoing basis.
  9. A great teacher maintains professionalism in all areas

Resources for Administrators

Books: 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Convey

The Inclusive Leader: An Applied Approach to Diversity, Change, and Management by Dr. Amine Ayad & Dr. Emad Rahim
inclusive leader
App: TED Talk

I’ve never had the desire to be a school administrator. Not for one second. I’ve always known that my place is in front of a classroom with chalk in my hand. (OK, times have changed, and there are no more chalkboards. Make it an erasable marker—you pick the color.) Even though I’m a confessed non-administrator type, I may have a message for others who see a school principalship in their future.

In my travels as my state’s current teacher of the year, I recently had an amazing opportunity to visit a number of school communities in North Carolina and talk to teachers, support staff, parents, and students about what makes a good school-based administrator. When it comes to defining what makes a principal great, I soon discovered that there are characteristics common across school levels and community demographics.

Here are the results of my unofficial research on the “Principles of Great Principals.”

  • The school is a family.
  • Teachers are treated as professionals.
  • Instruction in the school is data-driven.
  • They are student-centered.
  • They reach out to families.
  • They have great reservoirs of energy.
  • They promote school spirit and teamwork.
  • They develop leaders.
  • They have good help.

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