The Reality Conundrum: What We Know Works vs. What We are Required To Do

The reality is this: what we know works and what we are required to do as teachers often don't align. The conundrum is how to choose. We want to choose what we know is best for our students 100% of the time. Sadly, our institutional inertia and regulation and testing means that too often isn't possible. [...]

Traveling Teacher: National Museum of African American History and Culture

I was recently able to attend a conference earlier this February in the nation's capital, and the hottest ticket in town is the National Museum of African American History and Culture, or NMAAHC for short. In the span between its opening (September of 2016) and Valentine's Day, 2017, 1 million visitors have walked through the [...]

Educate Yourself and Vote

I am praying for our nation.  We have a circus going on being sensationalized by the media.  While this is happening, in fourth grade, I teach my students about government.  They are exploring a basic understanding of how democracy works. They are learning about the three branches of government.  And we will explore rights and responsibilities of citizens.  These [...]

Teachers are Not Martyrs

Three weeks ago I made the difficult decision to leave my school and accept a 4th grade co-teaching position at another public school just blocks away. When I came back to teaching after a year in grad school, one thing that had changed for me was a deeper commitment to build community within and outside my [...]

Formative Assessment: A New Lesson Plan

Formative assessment is using purposeful observations and information about students to move their learning forward. It enables teachers and students to understand their learning and have meaningful dialogue.  This has been applied in classrooms through Kahoot! quizzes, exit tickets and quick thumbs up thumbs down activities.  Formative assessment, however, has more power when it is [...]