Being Ms. Rhames: Reflections From a Substitute Teacher

During my maternity leave from mid-November to early March, Virginia Cutshall served as my substitute teacher. I asked her write an honest depiction of her experience in a guest blog post.


Dare to Create 'Beloved Community' in Public Schools and Urban Neighborhoods

In this guest blog post, Diane Miller makes a passionate plea for radically changing our cultural definition of "community." If we want the conditions of the world to improve, then those of us who have choice must choose to live differently for the common good of all humanity, especially the children.


The Book Club Experiment: Engaging Boys of Color in Reading

Can offering more boy-orientated, relevant texts and freeing up the space for more dialogue and self-expression turn ten boys who are indifferent to school into well-behaved students who do their homework and enjoy reading? That's the experiment.


Will Little Sally Go to Yale or to Jail? There's an Algorithm For That

As a reform-minded teacher who has never had an anti-testing stance, I am concerned that the good intentions of the test (i.e. to measure student growth and to hold teachers accountable for a measure of that growth) is quickly becoming something much more than that ... something much scarier.


In Three Months, I Forgot How to Teach

My first day back at school after a three-month maternity leave revealed just how much I had forgotten about teaching.


Black History: How a White University Changed a Poor Black Girl's Life

I got an education in the truest sense of the word while attending a predominantly white university. Persevering through loneliness and being misunderstood at college worked to build my character and identity, as did being exposed to opera, classical music and European travel.


Questioning Empowers Students, Deepens Their Humanity

The hardest intellectual decision teachers have to make is what content to directly, explicitly teach and what to leave open for students to learn through a process of questioning, dialogue, and self discovery. Finding the perfect balance of direct instruction and student inquiry is a tension that is pulled even tighter by the constraints of time in the school day. But teachers must always leave room for student questioning.


How to Increase Parental Engagement in Urban Education, Part 2

Dr. Anthony L. Moore, an assistant superintendent of schools in Kansas City, Missouri, writes Part 2 of his guest blog on increasing low parental engagement in urban settings. He challenges schools to roll out the "red carpet" for parents and provides his "Top 10" list of ways parents can elevate their own level of engagement in their child's education.


How to Increase Parental Engagement in Urban Education, Part 1

Urban schools are notorious for having low parental engagement. In part one of his two-part guest blog, Dr. Anthony L. Moore, a school district leader in Kansas City, Missouri, outlines the difference between parental involvement vs. parental engagement and sets the stage for laying out his specific, practical strategies for increasing parent participation.


'Breaking Bad': A Cautionary Tale for Teachers in the Wake of Walter White

Guest blogger John Choi was addicted to the hit TV show Breaking Bad. Now that the show has ended, Choi manages his withdrawals by analyzing both the inspirational and more ominous lessons the main character Walter White—meek high school science teacher turned ruthless drug dealer—teaches us.


The opinions expressed in Charting My Own Course are strictly those of the author and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.

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