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Showing posts from December, 2016

Late start time for middle and high school students

just wanted to share another article showing research of the benefits of late start for middle and high school students: http://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2015/08/why-school-should-start-later/401489/?utm_source=atlfb

What SCARES you?

I have a sign that sits in my classroom beside my computer. It has become my teaching mantra for many years. It says, “Do one thing everyday that SCARES you.” On my particular sign, Eleanor Roosevelt is credited with this quote; however, no one really knows the true origin. These sentiments have been shared numerous times over the years, and I always considered it a driving force for my teaching. I like to think outside the box. I like to try new things in my classroom. I like making my kids think in new ways. Trying something new has never been an issue for me. I’m open to new ideas and suggestions, and I’m willing to give anything a try before I write it off. Do I feel like I live by my mantra? Not really.
I have often tried new ideas that made me nervous, but I seldom try anything that really SCARES me. I began to think about what really makes me afraid. What holds me back from becoming the teacher I want to be? Doubt? Self-criticism? Fear of failure? The thing that really scares…

At Home in the Classroom

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“This classroom feels like a prison!”  The first time I heard I student say that, I agreed with him.  We were trapped inside grayish white walls made of solid brick forced to sit in uncomfortable desks placed in rows for over 90 minutes.  The air was filled with a tangy blend of armpit and chicken biscuits. My students heard the same thing repeated daily and altered slightly for the situation: “don’t, stop, and that's not allowed.”  I went home daily exhausted and ready to give up. I was doing what I was supposed to do. I made rules, stuck to them, and attempted to teach the material, but no one was buying it.  As the last day of finals came and went, I was relieved that the struggle was over, but I was fearful of the year to come.  My first step was to realize that I am not, at my core, a disciplinarian.  I tried to force my students to accept my rule over the classroom and failed miserably.  My heart is to love my students and gain their trust and respect through holding high expe…

FAST FORWARD - Building Readers Beyond the Building

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Four of our elementary schools combine third-grade classes using Google Hangouts to inspire a passion for reading. And the media specialists say this is only the beginning.