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Professional Development During a Pandemic

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2020 has pushed all educators to the limit. It boggles the mind that any administrator would even think that this is the year for PD, but here are a few things to consider if you or your admin “have to” do professional development during a pandemic. Mental Health and PD Teachers and students should beRead more

Getting to Know Secondary Students

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OMG, TMI Teachers learn A LOT about their students. We overhear conversations that we wish we could unhear. We see cringeworthy actions taking place in the halls. And we have interesting conversations with students who like to overshare. You may think that it is completely unnecessary in the secondary classroom to gather information about yourRead more

Secondary Classroom Procedures

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Ummmm, What?!! So, last year I switched schools and went about my classroom planning for the beginning of the year as I had always done. I went through the textbooks for my two preps and planned some fun activities for the first few weeks. I attended planning meetings with my team. My syllabus and behaviorRead more

The Only 3 Classroom Rules You’ll Ever Need

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One of the big pushes in the past decade has been the idea of classroom ownership and having students create their own classroom rules. While I love the idea in theory, I’ve often been put in the position of having to teach a brand-new group of students for a very limited number of sessions. InRead more

Respect in the Secondary Classroom

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R-E-S-P-E-C-T…Defining what it means to me… Respect is a two-way street. I want my students to feel respected. I work hard not to react to students in a way that is unkind or condescending. To keep myself from losing my mind, I set clear expectations about actions that I do not appreciate in our classroom.Read more

Classroom Management in the Secondary Classroom

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Countdown to the Beginning of the Year Getting your secondary class set-up is a scramble. If you are anything like me, you are heavily focused on reviewing content, setting up engaging activities, and creating an initial semester or year-long pacing schedule in the weeks (or days) leading up to the beginning of the school year.Read more

SMART Goals for Kids

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The beginning of the school year, calendar year, or semester is a great time to teach your students about SMART goals. There’s a lot of correlation between growth mindset and SMART goals so I like to link the two together. Here is the way I work with my students on SMART goals. Step One: DiscussingRead more

How to Switch Grade Levels and Keep Your Sanity

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In my first year of teaching, I had exactly two days to prepare to teach 9th-12th grade math and literature after having student taught in 1st grade. Halfway through the school year, a teacher was let go and I had exactly 20 minutes (!!!) to prepare to teach her 6th/7th grade combo for the remainderRead more

Teaching is an Art, NOT a Science

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We polled dozens of teachers to ask the question – do you think teaching is an art, or a science?  While teaching does involve science, teachers we polled overwhelmingly agreed: teaching is an art, NOT a science. Educators gave us many great reasons to consider. Here are some of our favorites: I once read that scienceRead more

Should Parents Choose Their Child’s Teacher?

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A few weeks ago I was out to dinner to an old teacher friend. We hadn’t seen each other in a while and I was curious to know how her daughter, Lily, enjoyed second grade. Unfortunately, Lily had a terrible year and went from a kid who loved learning, to a kid who dreaded goingRead more