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August 21, 2017

Who Is the Ideal Teaching Candidate?

Where do good teachers come from? How do we pick promising candidates out of the crowd? What is the secret to putting the right people in the classroom?

March 30, 2017

The Disadvantages of Competitive Learning

I told my students I had assessed their prowess as musicians, and tried to divide the groups evenly, so nobody would be in the "top" band--or left behind. Our job was to play well all the time, to live up to our potential as performers--not to be better than the other band. It took a while, but this policy eventually led to greater achievement, especially from students who did not start out at the top of the skills spectrum.

January 12, 2017

Students: You're the Reason I Come to School Every Day

School talk today is generally around rigorous content and 21st-century skills and how we can measure those to make schools accountable. There is, however, a much more powerful, if subtle, set of factors that makes going to school worthwhile for both students and teachers.

October 29, 2016

Teacher Leadership vs. Teacher Professionalism

Teacher leaders are everywhere. Often, they're doing precisely what the established system wants them to do--accepting leadership roles and tasks pre-defined by that same system, for the distinction of being named a leader in a flat profession. Sometimes, they even get compensation or perks. But are they acting as professionals?

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