Monday, August 26, 2013

Bring On 2013-14

Here we go.  This week our 2013-14 activities start competing.  It's going to be an exciting ride with peaks and valleys.  That's part of the process and is unavoidable.  Through it all though there's a good feeling in the hallways and I think we're ready to go out and do our best.  This week's blog is full of Good Lucks.

Volleyball travels to Newton of Tuesday for a freshmen and varsity tournament.  On Thursday, we'll open our home season hosting West Marshall.  9/JV will start at 5:30, with varsity around 7:00.  Good Luck to all of the players and coaches.  Our coaches this year are Erin Hoffmann, Rebecca Blythe, and Scott Mavin.

Football will host Boone in the season opener at Doane Hakes Stadium on Friday night.  The freshmen will get things going at 4:45, with varsity kicking off at 7:30.  Good Luck to the Wildcat football players and coaches.  Our coaching staff this year consists of Mark Hoekstra, Jared Fletcher, Tony Smith, Jason Mehrhoff, JJ Novotny, Kyle Joiner, Brian Keeney, and Justin Hagedorn.  Remember, 2 non-district games before the district schedule starts.  In addition, on Friday night we plan to recognize the State Runner Up girls softball team at the end of the first quarter.

Cross Country does not run until next Tuesday, Sept. 3rd, at the SE Polk Invitational.  Good Luck to all of the harriers and coaches this season.  Cross Country coaches are Marty Mitchell and Thomas Cotter.

The CHS Marching Band and Color Guard has been working hard for a few weeks now too getting their 2013 show ready for competition.  It sounds like a real enjoyable show featuring Disney tunes.  We look forward to seeing them on the field this Friday night.  They are under the direction of Conner Tipping, Kim Howland, and Dana Baker.

Our Debate team is starting to get things organized.  They have a new coach this year, as our veteran coach, Mr. Fink, stepped down from that position after last year.  Good Luck on the preparation for your debate season.  Our new debate coach this year is Daphne Sayers.

Our cheerleaders and dance team have been hard at it all summer and are getting some great routines together.  Good Luck to both groups as their competition seasons start and they represent CHS.  Cheer coaches are Jen Nordhagen and Linsey Olsen, with the dance team under the direction of Dana Baker and Amanda Tower.

We also have two girls swimming in our Coop program with Lincoln High School.  Good Luck!!

The Fall Play is now being organized by Jon Wright.  This year's production will be "A Mid Summer Night's Dream".  Good Luck as you begin preparations for the show.

In addition, this doesn't begin to mention the 200+ Middle School students participating in programs at the middle school levels.  Good Luck to all of the students and coaches there as well.

We have so many students involved in the fall, and I'm very proud of how I anticipate them representing Carlisle Communtiy Schools.  Our coaches and sponsors are all working hard giving their best efforts for our students as well.  We'll work hard to control what we can control.  We can control our attitude, effort, and sportsmanship.  The rest is out of our control.  Parents and fans, I hope you'll appreciate the efforts and be a source of encouragement to our students and teams.  It's amazing what positive comments can do to help everyone involved.

What we do on the Activities side is the "Other Side of Education", and we believe we are instilling qualities in our students that can help them in all of their future endeavors.

Just a reminder to use our Carlisle Activities webpage to keep up on everything happening in the Activities Department.

We thank everyone for their support of our programs.  See you soon.


Monday, August 19, 2013

Closing Out 2012-13....A Look Back (Part 4)

Yes, the 2013-14 school year has begun, we'll take our last look at the 2012-13 blogs, and then kick off this school year next week.

April 22     New Girls Basketball Coach

 ......we are excited to announce Bryan White as our new Girls Basketball Coach and HS Math Teacher, pending board approval.

One of the priorities in this search was to find a qualified basketball coach who would also be a teacher in the high school to allow day to day access to our athletes.  We have found that person and are excited to have Coach White join us at Carlisle High School.

(This was the most viewed blog of the year with 195 views)

April 29     The Activities Team

(Special thanks to Vicki Born and Rich Parker)

It takes more than just the three of us to accomplish what we try to do each day, and there are other secretaries, administrators, and employees who give us a great deal of support  and help.  Thank you to all of the folks who contribute to the Activities Department and have helped in my first year here.  Couldn't have done it without each and everyone of you.

May 7     Spring/Summer/I Rating

Well, it's been quite an interesting spring.  One for the record books.  This spring has been unlike any other in terms of cancellations and rescheduling.  It's been a challenge for our coaches to gain consistency in their workouts, but they are to be commended for how they've handled it.  It's just another example of our motto of "control what you can control".  Control your reaction to the situation when you can't control the circumstances and what happens sometimes.

May 13     The Pioneer For The Iowa Girl

This post may be a bit of a history lesson for the younger readers.  The young ladies who read this should especially pay attention.  On Tuesday, May 14th, E. Wayne Cooley will be laid to rest after a memorial service honoring his life.  Mr. Cooley was the man who helped to make girls athletics in the state what they are.  Many of you still in high school may have never heard of him, but he was responsible for giving your grandmother's opportunities to play sports long before it was mandated by Title IX in 1972.

May 28     Advice for the Graduates (And Maybe All of Us)

So, if I were to give three pieces of advice here's what I'd offer.

1 - Find what you're passionate about and seek to make that your life work.  The goal is to not feel like you have to go to work a day in your life.  Think about what your strengths are and use them.  Chances are it points to what you're passionate about.

2 - Don't rush.  Enjoy the process.  You can't have right away what your parents, or other adults, have worked a lifetime to get.   This may be a job, the place they live, and some of the things they are able to do.  Good things take time.  What you've been put here to do may take some time too.  Learn from every experience and don't waste the bad ones.

3 - Treat others how you want to be treated.  You know, the Golden Rule that I talked about with Kindergarten classes when I taught elementary P.E. isn't a bad way to live.  Whatever you do, wherever you go, put others ahead of yourself.  Your family, your friends, your coworkers, even the people that are difficult.


Thanks for the memories 2012-13.  Here's to bigger and better in 2013-14 as we continue to pursue Excellence.


Thursday, August 15, 2013

Closing Out 2012-13...A Look Back (Part 3)

The 3rd installment looking back at the blogs of 2012-13.

March 10     Specialization

Dr. Andrews is a well knows orthopedic surgeon who has put the likes of Adrian Petersen, RGIII, and Drew Brees back in the game.  Even with those high profile athletes he has a passion for youth and unique insight into over use injuries.  

Thanks for taking the time to read this blog weekly, and this weeks article, which I think is very insightful.  

March 18     More On The Multi-Sport Athlete

Three questions are routinely asked by them all from NCAA Division I on down.

#1 - Character Questions

        What kind of a person are they?  (They being the student/athlete)
        What kind of character do they have?
         Can I trust them on weekends and when they are away from me?

#2 - Academic Questions

          What kind of student are they in the classroom?
          Will they go to class?
           Am I going to have to have someone on them all the time about doing their work?
          Coaches don't have time to have athletes that are going to fail or struggle in classes.
          They'll get someone else to take that spot.

#3 - Finally, and I don't make this up for the sake of this blog,
     Do they participate in other sports or activities?

            The college coaches I have dealt with, have wanted athletes competing
             year round.  Many have also been encouraged by a student's participation the fine arts
             because they know this makes them well rounded and they are learning to budget time, are
             organized, and not afraid to work.

             I had a young man being recruited by the University of Iowa to play football back in the
             mid-90's (yeah, I know ancient) and the football staff was glad that he continued to play
             basketball, so was I as he helped lead us to the state tournament.
             Never once did they tell him to not compete and just train to play football.

             They wanted him out for track in the spring to continue to train and compete in the shot put
             and discus, which he did.

             Yes, that's a NCAA Division I example, and most of our students will compete at a level
              lower than that, but I can almost guarantee that coaches at the NAIA and NCAA D-III
              level will be wanting multi-sport athletes.

April 1     Good Luck Spring Activities

April 8     When Opportunity Arises

                                   Make a difference.

April 15     Not This Week

My heart is heavy thinking about the tragedy that occurred this afternoon at the Boston Marathon.  I really don't have anything intelligent to write about in light of the horrible act of terrorism.  It's just hard to think.  
And it really wouldn't matter anyway.


Monday, August 12, 2013

Closing Out 2012-13...A Look Back (Part 2)

The 2nd installment of a look back at blogs published during the 2012-13 school year.

February 11, 2013     Think Before You Hit ENTER

Finally, It's really no secret that I believe we should try to make a positive difference in the lives of those around us every day.  I think that should not only go for the words we say to people but also to the things we type and post on social media sites.

"The best index to a person's character is how he treats people who can't do him any good, and how he treats people who can't fight back."
-Abigail Van Buren (Dear Abby)

February 18     The Moments

One of the moments I'll remember from this past basketball season is shown below:

You bet, I want to win, but I firmly believe that what we do in athletics and activities must be an extension of the classroom.  Even though I've been here for less than a year I have no doubt that we have students who would display great sportsmanship, compassion, and would do the right thing when given the opportunity.  I again, challenge our coaches/sponsors/directors/students/parents to not miss an opportunity when it's presented to you.

We'll keep looking for ways to show Wildcat Pride and we'll do it with Class.

February 25     More On The Moments

Here's my challenge to you:

If you participate in athletics and activities as a student think about the journey you go on through a season. You may have won championships or even endured tough seasons without a lot of victories, but think about the experiences you had with your teammates, the laughs, the crazy moments that are etched in your mind that maybe only those that were there know about or appreciate.  You may even think of some sad moments that are important to you because of a special bond with someone on your team or in your group.  Those memories happened on the journey and help to define who you become.

Coaches and Sponsors, think about some of the journeys you've been on with different teams or groups.  Think of those success stories that you've experienced and the memories that you've been able to help create and you enjoy even to this day.

March 4     Winter Seasons Come to An End

Together WE can/will work to improve and move our programs to the next level.  We'll never settle until "our good is better, and our better is best".


Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Closing Out 2012-13...A Look Back (Part 1)

As we bring the 2012-13 activity season to a close I thought it would be fun and nostalgic to look back on the year and highlight the blogs that were written in the last few months.  We will start to get back on a regular schedule of blogs as the school year gets started again.  I am also inviting all of our coaches and activity sponsors to write a blog sharing what participating in Activities means to them.  I'm hoping they will take advantage of this opportunity....if not, you'll be stuck with me each week.  

Here's a sampling of what was shared during the past school year with the date of the blog, it's title, and a bit from the last few lines of each blog.  This is Part 1.  Look for this to be a four part series posted every couple of days.

In addition, any of these blogs can always be accessed and revisited at the blog site by using the blog archive.

June 26, 2012     So...Who's The New Guy

 I like to use technology to communicate information, opinions, and facts to our constituents.  You can follow me on Twitter @toddagordon and can also follow the new Twitter site of Carlisle Wildcat Activities @carlislewildcats. I will also be using this blog as well to communicate with you from time to time.  Even with all this technology there is still nothing like a face to face talk and I look forward to personally meeting folks in the Carlisle community and working together to provide quality programs for our students.

August 2     When It Feels Like Home

 I know without a doubt that I have new home in Carlisle now because of what I saw on a hot July afternoon from a group of fans, coaches, and players.  I'm still learning the Carlisle way in some areas of my job but I'm sure that we're going to get some great things accomplished  because of the Carlisle Way of competing and that makes me excited to get to "work". Oh, and boy, does this feel like home.

November 11     What's Been Going On?

So, it's been quite an eventful fall and I've been trying to learn how things have worked around here.  We've made some changes and will continue to evaluate things and try to make them as efficient  as possible as the Carlisle Schools and Activities Department continues to grow and work on a larger scale.  We ask for your understanding as we go through some growing pains but we do ask you to remember that the Activities #1 priority will always be our students and providing them the opportunities and experiences beyond the classroom that help prepare them for their future.

February 2, 2013     Commit

I got a book a couple of weeks ago by Jon Gordon (no relation) “One Word that Will Change Your Life”.  Highly recommended.  Reads in about 30-40 minutes.  My word for the year is COMMIT.  I’m going to commit to being better in every area of my life.  Husband, Father,Grandfather, Job, healthy choices…you get the picture.  Every area.  Even as a blogger.  So, I’ll try to share a few thoughts once a week on Monday morning.  I’m going to COMMIT to getting better.  How about you?  Want to join me?

February 4     10 Things I've Learned

2.  Success is a Journey, Not a Destination. We will never be done.  We want the target on our back, will work to get it there, and then embrace it.  

1. It’s Great To Be A Wildcat.  That IS #1!!

(I recommend going back and reading this one from Feb. 4).

One note:  Make sure to access and explore our Activities website Carlisle for the latest information and all forms pertinent to Carlisle Activities.