Celebrate Strengths: #IMMOOC Week 5.1

First let me admit that I missed week 4. I am planning to go back to it, so PLN, please hold me to that!

“When we build on our strengths and daily successes – instead of focusing on failures – we simply learn more.”  ~Tom Rath

This quote really stuck with me after re-reading chapter 8. Celebrate strengths; don’t focus only on weaknesses. How often do we do just the opposite in education, by focusing on skills that students struggle with? I definitely see it in music. Conductors will rehearse a piece with the ensemble and continuously stop the group to fix problems. It’s becomes an endless cycle of play-stop-fix-repeat. Or, we assign pieces of music to help an individual or ensemble “work on” a specific skill they lack. What if instead we select pieces that have specific features we know will be great, and include some challenging areas as well? Would it help students learn more? 


I think this continues to show the benefits of personalized learning for my students. By allowing students choice in the music they practice, they will be more invested in it and more likely to find success. This success builds confidence which leads students to choose more challenging music and continue the growth processes. The key here is allowing students the choice to achieve that initial success. The more I process all of this, the more I believe that noisy classroom and all – this is going to be a great thing for my students!

Similar Posts


  1. I will hold you accountable for the week 4 blog post. I always enjoy reading your musical mind. 🙂 Congrats on the flipgrid ambassador winter class.

  2. I’m not going to hold you accountable for anything; you’re doing very well on your own here with your wonderfully lyrical post about learning, growth, and choice. Enjoyed reading it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *