We May Know What We Want to Do, But Do We Know What We Need To Do?

We May Know What We Want to Do, But Do We Know What We Need To Do?

When I was an adjunct professor, one of my students in my Web design class asked me to define “creative,” because they said they weren’t very creative. I didn’t believe that. Everyone is creative. 1984-1985 was my first official year in the classroom, and I gave my 7th grade students an exercise. Each student was […]

A 1 To 1 Initiative

A 1 To 1 Initiative

You’re probably thinking this is going to have something to do with computers for each child in the classroom, BYOD, or perhaps a shadowing program to help increase enrollment. No, this article deals with a group of schools getting together to split the cost of a Director of Advancement so that these several schools can […]

Mind, Heart, Body and Soul…But Something’s Missing

Mind, Heart, Body and Soul…But Something’s Missing

An interesting thing happens when you start to think about systems thinking, especially in light of systems that you’ve heard about before. If you find three things, you start to look for where they intersect to come up with the emergent property of the system. If the three can create a fourth, what happens if […]

The System of Social Sciences

The System of Social Sciences

When I attended Seton Hill University in Greensburg, PA for my Master of Education degree, the experience was different as an adult learner than it was for me when I was an undergraduate student some 20 years prior to that time.  Back then, I was a commuter, really didn’t pay much attention to campus life, […]

The 5 Things One Needs in Life to Succeed – Part 2

The 5 Things One Needs in Life to Succeed – Part 2

Last month’s Tetrahedronics article detailed the 5 things one needs to succeed – a mentor, students, supporters, passion and dedicated commitment. I received some comments about other things that are also necessary, since several readers thought the list was incomplete without them. Analyzing the suggestions brought the number down to three additional traits – a compelling […]

The 5 Things One Needs In Life To Succeed – Part 1

The 5 Things One Needs In Life To Succeed – Part 1

A few years ago, my supervisor’s supervisor suggested a book to read called “Talent is Overrated: What Really Separates World-Class Performers From Everyone Else” by Geoff Colvin. Mr. Colvin is Senior Editor-at-Large for Fortune magazine. In it, he makes the argument that what separates the successful professionals from the rest of the pack is “Designing […]

Five Ways to Shut Off Your Mental Apps: An Article from Evan Roth

Five Ways to Shut Off Your Mental Apps: An Article from Evan Roth

For many school administrators, the school year has just ended, or, the end of another school year is just a couple of weeks away.  For Diocesan administrators, though, the summer is one of the busiest times of year – hiring new principals, allocating financial aid, and reconfiguring school alignments, etc. Whether you’re starting to wind […]

ARMED Goals Refined

ARMED Goals Refined

Last month’s post about ARMED goals seemed to hit upon some nerves…which is a good thing!  It’s only when “disruption” occurs that learning can take place. For the last 60 years, psychologists have extensively researched the theory of “Cognitive Dissonance,” which is the discomfort experienced when the mind has to simultaneously hold two or more […]

SMART Goals Are Now ARMED goals

SMART Goals Are Now ARMED goals

I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase, “Let’s think outside the box.” If we’ve already tried doing that with unsatisfying results, then perhaps the time has come to “dream” outside the box rather just “think.”  Of course, thinking outside the box can be done a couple of ways.  Are you thinking linearly, or systemically?  That’s another […]

Catholic Schools: “Foundational” to the Parish – Part II

Catholic Schools: “Foundational” to the Parish – Part II

A few years ago when I began this series of articles on systems thinking, one article was titled “Catholic Schools: ‘Foundational’ to the Parish.”  In it, I made the bold suggestion that if a parish-based Catholic school closes, that sends the message that the next closure or merger may be that of the parish itself. […]

The Five Choices to Extraordinary Productivity

The Five Choices to Extraordinary Productivity

According to Kory Kogon, Franklin-Covey productivity expert and co-author of “The Five Choices to Extraordinary Productivity” (Simon & Schuster, 2014), the phenomenon of “operating on autopilot” and using time unproductively is widespread today.  An international six-year study by Franklin-Covey found that 40 percent of respondents indicated they spent 40 percent of their time on things […]

Some Thoughts From Matthew Kelly, Author of “The Rhythm of Life,” “Building Better Families,” and “The Dream Manager”

Some Thoughts From Matthew Kelly, Author of “The Rhythm of Life,” “Building Better Families,” and “The Dream Manager”

When I saw that Matthew Kelly was coming to speak as a part of the Day for Catholic Men in the Diocese of Pittsburgh several years ago, I was excited. He also authored “Rediscovering Catholicism,” but anyone who speaks about “dreams” as a religious experience is someone I have to hear. If you’ve seen some […]

A Little More About Steve Jobs, and How His Approach Led to My 3->4->5 Theory

A Little More About Steve Jobs, and How His Approach Led to My 3->4->5 Theory

Tetrahedronics is all about seeing how things work as a system. In other entries in this site, you’ll find why there needs to be at least 5 elements in every system, and how systems thinking is necessary in order to understand and therefore solve some of the issues facing our world, and, especially for tuition-charging […]

5 Reasons Every Elementary School Needs an Advancement Director – Part 2: Budgeting and Planning for Succession

5 Reasons Every Elementary School Needs an Advancement Director – Part 2: Budgeting and Planning for Succession

Last month’s Tetrahedronics article apparently touched a few nerves, so we’ll continue to touch a few more, especially with some reports of what’s happening at some faith-based and private schools. Some school leaders have contacted me to say, “Adding a full-time Advancement Director is just not in the budget.”  That’s quite a telling phrase, and […]

5 Reasons Why Every Elementary School Needs a Full-Time Advancement Director

5 Reasons Why Every Elementary School Needs a Full-Time Advancement Director

You know the conversations that start out, “I have good news, and I have bad news,” and then the speaker asks the listener which one they want to hear first? Some prefer to hear the bad news first; others prefer not to hear the bad news at all. This time, let’s share some good news […]

Five Reasons Faith-Based Schools Need to Charge Higher, Not Lower, Tuition

Five Reasons Faith-Based Schools Need to Charge Higher, Not Lower, Tuition

I visit many faith-based schools every year, and every year I hear the same thing from a number of them: “We’re really hoping that things start to turn around, or else we may not be open next year.” When I ask what are the causes for their despair, the “big three” reasons are always cited: […]

No One Ever Is To Blame

No One Ever Is To Blame

Do you remember that song by Howard Jones from back in the 1980’s? It was built off the popular phrase of the time, “Just because I’m on a diet doesn’t mean I can’t look at the menu” as it pertained to individuals in committed relationships. Moving forward about 30 years, finding blame is something that […]

Linear Thinking Can Lead to Uncontrolled Growth

Linear Thinking Can Lead to Uncontrolled Growth

Read the title of this article again. Now consider if you think that’s a good thing…or a bad thing. Note how this headline is “reaction neutral.” It’s a great example of allowing the reader to get into the story to see if their suspicions are confirmed or discounted. That last word of the previous paragraph […]

5 Essential Elements for a School’s Success

5 Essential Elements for a School’s Success

Educators will certainly know from their training that in 1956, Benjamin Bloom identified three domains of educational activities, namely, Cognitive (mental skills, or Knowledge), Affective (awareness of feelings or emotional area, or Attitudes), and Psychomotor (manual or physical abilities, or Skills). Trainers refer to these categories as KSA (Knowledge, Skills and Attitudes). Educational psychologists have […]

Catholic Schools: “Foundational” to the Parish

Catholic Schools: “Foundational” to the Parish

Almost every year, one hears of a few faith-based schools that are closing or merging in their community. Most of these news stories center around Catholic schools. Rather than examine all the issues that surround the reasons for these actions, let’s just say that some of them are understandable – declines in the general population, […]