Archive for the ‘Opinion’ Category

  • Wiggles, Giggles and Learning

    on Oct 14, 14 • in Featured, Management, Opinion • with Comments


    The volume level in my classroom is not normal. And by that I mean it’s not silent. Or quiet. Or even remotely close to whispering. My classroom is noisy, busy and sometimes a bit chaotic. And I wouldn’t have it any other way. Now don’t get me wrong. We do quiet down, and even go silent at appropriate times, like when assignments have been handed out, tests are being given and when we are reading. But my busy bodies of six-and seven-year-olds get to wiggle, giggle and visit to their heart’s content during other times,

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  • Those Quaint Quirks of Kiddos

    on Oct 9, 14 • in Featured, From the Front Lines, Opinion • with Comments


    One of my favorite things about being a teacher is overhearing the things that kids say. Even better is hearing the things that parents say at drop off or pick up. I decided to compile a list of funnies from the past two weeks. Some of them leave me giggling randomly through the day, others, well, you tell me. Allow me to set up a few of the activities that are on going in my room. First, I have a selection of animals that I use to demonstrate different science concepts. Those critters include a

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  • Custodial Care: Respecting the Essential Education Support Services

    on Sep 25, 14 • in Current Events in Education, Opinion • with Comments

    custodian tools

    Who are the custodians at your school? Do you know them by name? Do you know their strengths and weaknesses? Are you reliant upon them? The crazy mess with custodial services in Chicago has made national news. Last year the Chicago Board of Education contracted custodial services with Aramark and Sudexo. Sudexo is primarily working at charter schools. Aramark is servicing the remainder of the schools. The complaints of dirty schools have been rampant. Over forty percent of the Chicago Public School principals replied to a survey sent out by AAPLE, a principal activist group

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  • Extending A Helping Hand: Mentor

    on Sep 24, 14 • in Elementary Classrooms, Opinion • with Comments


    Teaching is a blending of science and art.  Colleges across the nation prepare teachers to write lesson plans, understand discipline and teach content.  Interwoven in a great classroom, however, is experience and heart.  If you are a new teacher, find veteran teachers in your building who have strengths and ask questions.  If you are a veteran teacher, find teachers in your building who have strengths and ask questions.  We can all learn. And we can all mentor. I am honored to be part of a mentoring program in my district this school year.  We spent

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  • Have you Read a Banned Book Yet This Week?

    on Sep 23, 14 • in Featured, Literacy, Opinion • with Comments

    Young Student Reading A Book

    National Banned Books Week is upon us, and the American Library Association once again reminds us that the Freedom to Read is a right everyone deserves. Most school libraries, especially in high schools, used to celebrate Banned Books Week by making commonly banned books available or displaying them as a reminder. But nowadays, with massive budget cuts, many schools have been left without librarians or even libraries. If there are libraries, students rarely get to spend time there because of all the demanding proscribed classroom curriculum they must get through each day. But this week is

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