How will you start the new year? What did your first day look like? Engage in a discussion about the promise of a new year and how to keep teaching fresh, always testing our beliefs.


What is your teaching masterpiece? When you started teaching, what did you think the perfect teacher was? Has it changed? Read Amy Smith's version of a masterpiece and consider what changes you've undergone.


Good books are a portal to understanding humanity and if we use them well, we help teach kids to think and write beyond their perceived limitations. Learn how reading can be your "in" to even the most resistant learners.


We don't have to work on an island alone. We have an incredible wealth of information that can be shared among colleagues. So how would you handle finding out you were teaching something new? Me, I'd reach out to a colleague who has taught it.


Do you have a hard time saying "no"? Do you struggle with taking on too many commitments? Read on to get some tips on balancing the joy of helping and the necessity personal responsibilities.


What good are standards if students don't understand them? Students need to understand the expectations, in a language that makes sense to them, so why not have them rewrite them?


Do you hate the Common Core or do you hate the tests that are associated with the Common Core? Do you have a hard time separating the two? Too often school stakeholders spend their energy focusing on the wrong issues and therefore never address the actual problem. Do you think it's time for a change?


Have you ever needed to know something, but didn't know where to start? Have you ever wanted to change what you are doing in the classroom, but were short on inspiration? Being connected opens a world of possibilities to educators that make them and their classrooms infinitely more prepared for our current world.


We take ourselves so seriously. It is an important job. But what every teacher needs to remember since day one is that mistakes will be made and the only thing we can hope for is progress. So what will you learn from today?


If success comes from preparation, what goals will you put in place to ensure a measured amount of success this school year? How will you mark those achievements and push harder?


The opinions expressed in Work in Progress 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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