In over thirty-five classroom visits this week, a couple of things stood out. The first was the high value we put on active learning. It was great to see students in a variety of activities across the grade levels. I saw quite a bit of small group work, community meetings, game based centers, and outdoor physical education. Students were engaged and enjoying their learning experience. The second was the amount of writing students were engaged in. Writing can be one of the most difficult subjects to teach, and is often one of the most challenging for younger students. It was great to see how much writing was produced (age appropriate, of course) from kindergarten through eighth grade. The expectation that students will write, and write a lot, in their classrooms permeates the culture here and is one of the things that makes Dixie stand out.