Episode #237: Suzanne Dailey

Dana GoodierOut of the Trenches Podcast

Suzanne Dailey is an instructional coach in the Central Bucks School District, where she has the honor and joy of working with over 600 elementary teachers and 9,000 students. She teaches model lessons, facilitates professional development sessions, and mentors teachers to be the best for the students in front of them.   Suzanne is Nationally Board Certified, a fellow of the National Writing Project, and has a Master’s Degree in Reading. She is dedicated to nurturing and developing the whole child and teacher and presents these topics at a local, state and national level. Suzanne is the author of Teach Happier this School Year: 40 Weeks of Inspiration & Reflection and the host of the popular weekly podcast, Teach Happier.

Trenches story: still crawling out. Personally & professionally. Lost her mom recently at age 68. Has a neurodivergent child who has needed a lot of strategies. Also, recalibration w/ st’s post-pandemic. Getting back to baseline & trying to move forward. Priorities has been

Talk about Teach Happier podcast– now on 3rd season, 5 m (drops on Sundays-most ppl listen on Mon morning). “small shifts bring big gifts”. Started in Dec. ‘20. Mom was sick, trying time w/ her own neurodiverse child. Surrounded herself w/ books on positive psychology. Wanted it specifically for educators. She plans what she’s going to say ahead of time. Underwhelming shift- in your thoughts, language, action. It can work @ home too, we can’t always separate ourselves from our other roles. Project that was inspired at first TB conference. Adam Welcome inspired her. No-risk project. She loves underwhelming b/c everything has been so overwhelming. So much constantly in our own heads. Taking “what if”, to “even if”- like the tech fails for the lesson. Freeing feeling.

Teach Happier: 40 Weeks of Inspiration & Reflection-book is out now (published by ASCD- coming Jan. 5):  follows a typical school year. She wants school leaders to say, “this year the initial is”. She wants admin to say, “this year’s initiative is you”. 4 10-week sections. 1x/wk 2-3 pg story. Healthiest head/heart space is possible. What’s our next right step?

Talk about National Writing Project (2005)– a few courses. You learn to hone your craft, teach writing more effectively. It allowed her to start doing workshops/trainings. It’s what got you started w/ all writing PD. She’s been in her instr. coach role 10 yr. Game-changing moment for her. Helped her be a much more compassionate t of writing. Ralph Fletcher quote. Whatever kids are passionate about, there’s a story there. Model lessons based in literacy.

Talk about some of your PD session offerings such as:

Cultivating a Joyful Writing Classroom

Essential Elements of Writing Instruction

Infusing Student Choice in the Writer’s Workshop

Building & Sustaining the Writer’s Notebook

Mini-lessons for all stages of the Writing Process

no matter what we teach, we’re the best … in the room. We wouldn’t teach algebra w/o examples. Show them what a good informative piece looks like. 2nd element-teacher as writer. Messy first draft. Intimidating to get pieces from head to paper. Productive talk- writing isn’t a silent activity. Ask peers what they want to do w/ their piece. You have to show that typing thoughts out on paper can be a joyful event.

& Student Programs & Assemblies mainly for adults, whole grade level PD- In her podcast episodes designed for t’s she & colleague makes lessons that are ready to go. You upload them. What if?  to even if? Whether it’s done in a 15-20 m mini-lesoon. What does it mean to understand that the cup is refillable? show students gratitude & conscious acts of kindness. Feeling content, aligned, balanced.

Out of everything? on Kelly Corrigan’s, podcast “Wonders”-she says #1 rule of whitewater rafting- Be a part of your own rescue. It’s an inside job. Click To Tweet Recognize it’s a season.

Find Suzanne online: www.suzannedailey.com @daileysuzanne 


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