LGBT students who would like to join a sport, or perhaps are already good at one, may learn that sexual orientation doesn't matter out on the field. What will help them learn that even more is when using derogatory words about sexual orientation isn't allowed on their field either. Most of us have attended sporting events. They're exciting to watch and remind older fans of a time when they were competitive. In high school, sporting events are an important part of the school culture. Friday nights are spent watching football games where students go out to support their teams. Sports ...


They wanted Jade to move. It didn't matter if they were an aide, teacher or principal, when she walked in they didn't want to engage with her. When Jade didn't want to do work in the classroom she fell to the floor and began having a temper tantrum. It seemed like 2 year old behavior coming from the 7 year old body. She moaned and hissed at other students. Sometimes she even smiled when she walked away from students knowing that she scared them. It made her feel better. When she announced she was moving to another public school the ...


People who are keenly aware of the trials and tribulations of life understand that since birth life has offered us different opportunities to build coping skills. Life is not kind to everyone. It doesn't matter if it's a break-up gone bad or a death in the family, we don't leave this planet unscathed. It does seem as though some people have a few more tough situations than others. The best advice I ever heard about working with people going through a hard time is, "Just because it's not the hardest thing you've ever been through doesn't mean it's not the ...


If we are to truly give our students a better education system, we first must get rid of a flawed system built on testing. This past week, many New York State students had to take field tests and my fourth grade students were one of the groups chosen. I'm sure it had nothing to do with this blog. I'm sure that there was some magical formula used to "choose" these schools. Field tests are used to see if questions are too easy, too hard or just right. Think...Goldilocks and The Three Bears only with a testing twist. Most administrators ...


The percentage of children aged 6-11 years in the United States who were obese increased from 7% in 1980 to nearly 20% in 2008. Weight of The Nation Our students don't get outside enough. When I taught second grade in a city school I brought my students outside for recess and a little girl came running up and thanked me for taking the outside. It's not like she was the first student to thank me for giving them recess but it was her words that followed that bothered me the most. "This is the only time I get to go ...


Great Lessons are a continuous conversation from one day to the next where you build on yesterday in preparation for tomorrow. It sounds like common sense. Shouldn't all observations be evidence based? Is this a passing fad using new vocabulary? Or is this a new focus for principals and teachers? The stakes are high and our focus has to be clear. We need evidence that our students are learning and state tests are not the way to do that. However, teacher observations and the conversations that take place before and after are important to that process because they can have ...


Today's guest blog is written by from former N.Y.C teacher and present Columbia Doctoral Candidate Michael Albertson. Mike previously wrote Urban Education: Issues and the Future for Finding Common Ground. Students of all backgrounds face a variety of challenges during their years of formal education. Environment is a large factor -- that is, rural, suburban, urban -- and each present unique conditions. However, the problems faced by students in urban schools are the most glaring. While cities serve both culturally and economically diverse populations of students, too often this diversity is not reflected in the student bodies of ...


In honor of my friends Diane Ravitch and Anthony Cody I am publically submitting the following letter to President Obama. Diane, Anthony and teachers, administrators, students and parents from across the nation are doing this today. 10/17/12 Dear President Obama: As an elementary school principal and blogger for Education Week I am writing this letter out of concern for the education of our children. The increase in time spent on taking high stakes tests in New York State has grown exponentially over the past few years. Our students, as young as 7 years-old are subjected to hours of ...


Recently I read an article based on the book Faster Isn't Always Smarter (2009) by Cathy Seeley. Seeley stated, "Certainly as part of a complete and balanced mathematics program it is useful to be able to add, subtract, multiply, and divide quickly, and it is important to know basic addition and multiplication facts without having to figure them out or count on your fingers. But asking students to demonstrate this knowledge within an arbitrary time limit may actually interfere with their learning." I'm one of those people who loved flashcards and doing addition, subtraction, multiplication and division at a fast ...


If you believe that technology is a distraction and not a way to enhance educational practices, you're probably not using it correctly. • Why do we have to talk about technology so much? • I'm too busy to use it. • Isn't Twitter for Justin Bieber and Taylor Swift? • Can't we just disconnect and move past this technology driven focus in education? • Kids are so disconnected from school. All they care about is playing games on their computers. There seems to be an issue with technology as well as social networking. There are those educators who are considered "connected" whom...


The opinions expressed in Peter DeWitt's Finding Common Ground are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.

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