I know that this is a strange title for a post, but it is true. Even though 7-11 is not an educational institution, I found that I still learned so much from them (No - I do not own stock in 7-11 but I do love their slurpees. I will be a slurpee fan until I die!)
1. Know your audience - they knew that a long name would not work and they needed to let their customers know when they would be open. Keep it short and simple and sweet - how often in education do we NOT do this??
2. Duck rule- I found myself at a local Kum and Go ( I know...horrible name but I did not choose it) and was willing to try their Kooler (aka slurpee). It was not the same!! Just because something looks like a duck and walks like a duck does not mean that it is a duck. In education, we are always looking for the next big thing or the silver bullet that will solve all of our problems. We need to be weary of ducks that come waddling our way and investigate for ourselves.
3. Give them what they need - 7-11 is not a replacement for a supermarket and they know it. They only stock what their customers need. Why don't we do this in the classroom? I know that differentiation has been a buzzword for a while, but is there more that we can be doing to give the kids exactly what they need and nothing more or less?
4. Keep current - 7-11 always is running promotions with the current movies that are out. We as educators need to stay current in our pedagogy and practice as well. Sure they have a whole department that dedicates itself to doing this, but we can make a small effort. Any change is better than no change at all.