3 Ways to Redefine Failure

I entered the teaching profession hungry to learn how to be a great educator and ready to become the next National Teacher of the Year! I watched Stand and Deliver, Freedom Writers, Dangerous Minds, Lean on Me, and Dead Poets Society, just to name a few. I was ready!

March Math Madness: Making Mental Math Cool to Kids

With 2019’s March Madness set to begin on March 19th, educators have more than their basketball brackets to prepare!! With my last few posts focusing on literacy, it is time to give math some love! Similar to cultivating a culture of reading in your classrooms and schools, it important to create a culture of math: to make math cool! It just so happens that March gives us, as educators, the perfect opportunity to do so.

Regardless of what age you teach, this competition is possible, purposeful, and plain ol’ FUN.

Everything Is Earned: Living This Principle in Your Classrooms and Schools

As LeBron James says, “Nothing is Given. Everything is Earned.” Regardless of your feelings on LeBron, it is important for our young people (well, all people) to internalize this life lesson.

Most kids spend at least 13 years in a K-12 school setting. Be it public, private, or charter—13 years of a similar setting can get a bit redundant. 13 years of at least 7 hours a day is also a significant amount of time. Many kids spend just as much time with their peers and teachers as they do with their families at home. As such, it is critical that we intentionally plan for scaffolded privileges and freedom throughout their school “careers.”

5 Edcite Settings That Support Assessment Security

Teachers give assessments so that they can find out what students understand, what needs to be reviewed or retaught, and where differentiation needs to happen. Because the goal is to determine if student learning has occurred, it’s important for assessments, especially summative assessments, to be true indications of what students know. 

When teachers give an assessment on Edcite, they can quickly enable free settings that help support assessment security in the classroom.

How to Cultivate a Culture of Reading

At any moment of the day, a variety of stimuli are vying for our students’ attention. Video games. Instagram. Snapchat. Twitter. Texting. Facetime. The list goes on and on. Thus, in order for a kid to choose a book over all the other competing options, we must cultivate a culture of reading. Reading must be equally as “cool” as Fortnite. Period. Here are three tips for cultivating a culture of reading in your classrooms and schools.

An ELA Teacher’s Dream Come True: Thousands of Copyrighted Works Entered the Public Domain

As English language arts teachers know best, teaching students to read is multi-faceted and incredibly complex. One of the best professional development (PD) experiences I have had was Close Reading led by Doug Lemov and the Teach Like a Champion team. At this PD they emphasized and re-emphasized the importance of text selection when teaching students to read. Specifically, they shared what they have coined, “The 5 Plagues of the Developing Reader” and the need for teachers to choose texts that target these five plagues. By exposing students to the five plagues in a setting where the teacher and peers can dialogue and analyze the texts together, we are then teaching students how to comprehend and analyze complex texts on their own

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