The end of this year has been a challenge, in a few ways. One is the fact that schools seem to love to squeeze in as much as possible into the last few weeks of school. Yet, at the same … Continue reading Problem-Solving Limbo
Have-to Exhaustion is defined medically as: a sense of mental or physical fatigue experienced as a result of ones have-to obstructing their want-to. Symptoms include muscle fatigue/tension (from worrying all day about making the wrong decision), headaches, sore feet (from walking the entire building in dress shoes), and onymailophophia (the fear of seeing certain names in your unread email). Continue reading A Case of “Have-to Exhaustion”
Beliefs are critical to success. The ability to change beliefs is equally important to success. As educators, we need to remember that all of us are capable of making significant shifts in beliefs, and that children are particularly malleable. As … Continue reading The importance of beliefs, and changing them
Fortunately, as a Quaker school, we spend time each week in meeting for worship – this is time spent in shared silence, often spent reflecting on attempting to understand our many experiences. In Quakerism, we also focus on the belief … Continue reading Teaching for Tomorrow (Literally, tomorrow)
There is a challenge in education in which we must show patience – with students, parents, fellow teachers – but if we want to accomplish certain goals, we have to work hard, even impatiently, rather than waiting for them to happen. Finding that balance is a challenge, but it is also important to improving your student’s experiences and your teaching.
We often hear teacher-led or student-led when describing classrooms, mistakes are an essential characteristic of learning. We don’t simply walk into learning. Even when someone guides us there, we typically have to make a mistake before it sinks in. As a teacher, I know that my students will make mistakes, and lots of them. Therefore, if I am not teaching them how to respond to a mistake, then I am not teaching. Continue reading 5 ways to design a Mistake-Driven classroom
Wagner made me realize one of the reasons that I find these students so appealing – they cling to passion and play longer than most students. I have taught third and fifth grades, and most students have figured out how to play the school game by the time they have reached the age of 9. Young Originals, however, maintain their desire to find the humor and joy in the mundane. Continue reading Young Originals: The importance of passion and play, the challenge of purpose
For the last two days, I’ve been reading Paul Solarz’s (that looks weird, I think it should be Solarz’) book Learn Like a Pirate. I am pretty sure he is the best fifth grade teacher ever. This bothers me for two reasons. One is that I am pretty sure I can never reach his skill level. And two, I just left my fifth grade classroom and feel like I need to go back right away to try out all of the things I just learned from his book. Continue reading I’m annoyed and I blame it on Paul Solarz (because he is awesome)!
The phrase, unlock learning, jumped out of the computer and has been stuck in my head for the last few days. As I’ve had a few days to toss around the phrase and the connecting ideas, I started to unlock my own learning. Two strategies/methods for unlocking learning spoke most clearly to me. Continue reading Unlocking learning
As teachers I feel like we often forget the fact that we are always leaders, whether we want to be or not. We look at administrators, teachers speaking at conferences, teachers who write books, as leaders. Yet, every day we have the opportunity to improve the life of a single child. In a school year, teaching 20-30 students for 180, we need to recognize that the opportunities for us to impact a child’s life are immense. Continue reading Freire was a real superhero