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September 22, 2018

Thirteen Things I learned While Blogging for Education Week

This is the 500th blog I've written as the Teacher in a Strange Land, for Education Week Teacher. As it turns out, it's also my final blog for EdWeek. Here are 13 things I have learned in the past nine years of observing and writing about Ed World.

September 11, 2018

Whose Opinions Matter in Education World?

It's hard to identify education heroes and sheroes. And perhaps even harder to pinpoint just whose work is slanted, paid-for and dishonest.

August 15, 2018

Book Review: What School Could Be

Dintersmith's take on what's going on in American schools seems to evolve throughout his narrative, built on daily experience through the lens of a non-educator-- going into school after school, meeting teachers, 'thought leaders' and honchos, then filtering their pitches, schticks and Big Ideas through his own Midwestern sensibilities. Is this real? he asks. Could this work everywhere? Should it?

August 10, 2018

A Teacher's Reckoning on School Shootings

I thought about what I had done during the 82 days since the Parkland shooting. Was it helping? Was it enough?

August 06, 2018

What Did You Learn in History Class?

Teachers today are fearful of deviating from the textbook and state standards and opening discussions in secondary classrooms around bits of information (say, for example, the U.S. turning away ships full of Jewish refugees during WW II) that might portray America as less than enlightened.

July 17, 2018

Bad Language in the Classroom

There are differences in use of offensive language--centered around the content of the point the speaker is trying to make. Still, I am appalled (as a teacher, especially) by the degradation of language in public discourse. Before we start selectively shaming folks, I think we should look at root causes.

July 05, 2018

The Blessings of Liberty Include Fully Public Education

I think I was experiencing the sacred last night, watching the 90-something Navy man sing 'Anchors Aweigh' in the front row--and the grandfathers who served in Vietnam shyly nod to each other across the crowd. I also thought about where and how those men and women were educated. Where did they absorb the idea that citizenship is both blessing and duty? Who taught them to read and calculate, who nurtured their talents and their dreams?

March 20, 2018

We Need Civic Online Reasoning in Our Schools

It's hard to imagine what could be more important than developing the critical thinking skills that facilitate our students' ability to discern truth from fake news. Media literacy may be in the standards, somewhere, but it's not on the test, so it gets short shrift in the classroom.

March 07, 2018

Ten Things We Shouldn't Expect Public Schools to Do

I'm hardly the first person to say this, but we expect way too much from our schools, which are only as good as the steadfast people who show up to work in them. Schools can't re-order the mess we've made of our democracy or work individual miracles on every undernourished child.

September 01, 2017

What It Takes for Families to Support Public Education

When it comes to education, we've certainly allowed all kinds of predators and vandals to chip away at America's best idea: a completely free, high-quality public education for every child. No matter what they bring to the table.

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The opinions expressed in Teacher in a Strange Land 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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