We are very intentional in our work to make change and trying make teachers feel safe and respected in our endeavors to change students’ lives. I’m very careful to avoid using words like ‘successful’ and ‘right’ because I think it promotes previous stereotypes and mindsets that things have to be done a certain way and/or failure… Read More I’m Not Afraid of the Door Handle
Great things happen in classrooms, in department planning, with school cultures, when we are willing to challenge ourselves. Current students don’t get the ‘Day 23 Activity from the file cabinet’ because the teacher is willing to let go of an activity he/she feels good about and is willing to build a meaningful, personalized activity; We are… Read More Value of Shattering Comfort Zones
I’m becoming more cognizant of how and how often I am using the term ‘learning.’ Like most, I’ve been using it mainly to describe how well students regurgitate facts and associate it with an achievement score. I was recently sharing with some principals in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools and about halfway through the presentation I started to… Read More When Does Profound Learning Occur?
Student engagement has always been a critical goal for how we set up classrooms and develop lesson plans. Ensuring that we have a tight time frame of activities and that we were monitoring students of on-task behaviors were [and are] essentials. This defined quality lesson planning. Some recent training in my district on engagement led me… Read More Engagement vs Empowerment
Teaching is one of the most fulfilling professions ever. Ask any teacher who’s had a previous student return to talk fondly about their time in the classroom and you’ll know what makes this job so rewarding. But along with this fulfillment comes some of the greatest challenges – committing to lifelong personal growth and professional development… Read More Lowered Expectations
Last weekend, I presented at the #WGEDD conference in Kansas City. Getting the invite from Jimmy Casas and Jeff Zoul to share was a highlight. I knew I was going to have a great time connecting and sharing – two of my favorite things and this meet up did not disappoint. Its no wonder why #WGEDD… Read More #WGEDD – Valuable Learning
Last week, I had the privilege of giving a co-keynote with a good friend, John Bernia, at AMLE [Association of Middle Level Education]. This was a great experience, truly a tremendous honor! We had a blast energizing about 1000 educators committed to growing and supporting middle school students. I can’t thank Dru Tomlin, Dena Harrison… Read More Embracing Middle Schools and Loving Middle Schoolers