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November 10, 2016

Honoring the "Otherness" of Our Students

Living outside the box, has helped me engage countless students into a dance that encourages them out of their own comfort zones and into their own unique skins. First helping them take the labels off, and then placing their reflective glasses on.

November 08, 2016

Reading Logs Suck!

We must be mindful in what we ask students to do on their free time and really make sure it's something worth doing. Do we want them to love reading and spend time doing it because the enjoy it or do we want to monitor their every move and determine how they will interact with text?

November 03, 2016

Celebrating Teachers and Teaching, New York Style

#ECET2NY914 will kick off this weekend as a part of the growing trend of regional ECET2 (Elevating and Celebrating Teachers and Teaching) convenings happening all over the country. Participating in events like these is a unique and inspiring experience, but in addition to participating this year, I'...

October 25, 2016

Co-Construct Success Criteria For Optimal Student Buy-in

We must continue to offer students opportunity to take ownership of their learning or they will never learn how to do so. The more we insist on their involvement, the more they will have to get involved.

October 18, 2016

What Every Student Needs is More Testing...

All students have the right to feel like they have something valuable to offer the world and it's our job to ensure that no test takes that away from them. There is more to each of us than our score on any given exam and we must keep this in perspective. Until we move away from exams completely to other, more effective and meaningful assessment like portfolios and project based learning, students will have to endure the ticking of the clock and the use of number 2 pencils.

October 16, 2016

Actionable Feedback Is Essential for Growth

Providing feedback is an art and as we continue to propel our students into independence, we need to carefully monitor where they are providing them the necessary steps like training wheels until they are ready to ride alone. The magic is in that moment when they realize that they know how already.

October 13, 2016

It's Time to Lighten the Load and Stop Giving Traditional Homework

We need to recognize that children have very active lives both in and out of school starting at younger and younger ages now. They play travel sports which helps foster physical skills and team collaborative skills that build stamina and frustration tolerance. They play instruments which develops discipline and a love of music and additional fine motor skills. They join clubs that encourage them to dig deeper into their passions and connect them to what they are learning already in a social environment.

October 09, 2016

Make a Difference One Child at a Time

You may hear stories about "super" seniors, those who take longer to graduate than the allotted four years of high school, and think that it's a challenge to work this group of kids, but there is something really special about it too.

October 06, 2016

Missing My Former Students and Former Program

Journalism is a discipline that has always supported true creation and application of 21st century skills and does it in a way where students are doing more than they are sitting and getting.

October 02, 2016

Are Procedural Lesson Plans Worth it?

In the first five years of teaching, writing lesson plans was absolutely necessary for me. Meticulously I planned the period, minute to minute insuring that everything was covered... just in case. Fearful of deviating, even a little, I wrote down questions with the exact answers I expected. This way...

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