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The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teachers: Habit 3 – First Things First

My friend and former student-teacher called me the other week: "I need to vent to you for 10 minutes." "We were supposed to get the vaccine once our meetings finished today. I received a text at 12:50p telling me the window for the vaccine was 1p-4p. As I was heading out the door, I received [...]

OPINION: I Chose The New Deputy Secretary of Education Myself Once

The school in which I teach, and now send my daughter to learn, lies in one of the lowest socioeconomic neighborhoods in San Diego.  Nearly all of its students qualify for free and reduced lunch, the vast majority of the students speak English as a second language and teachers teach their hearts out. But there’s [...]

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teachers: Habit 2 – Begin with the End in Mind

When I studied for my M.Ed. in Leadership, the lasting lesson that I pulled from my coursework was from a program called Understanding By Design (now called "Backward Design"). It essentially advocates effective teaching is to lesson plan by beginning with the outcome - whether for the year, unit, week, or lesson. Why? The most [...]

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teachers: Habit 1 – Be Proactive

In the children's book Alexander and the Terrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, author Judith Viorst's protagonist Alexander continually falls victim to an awful 24-hour period, saying things like: "I fell asleep with gum in my mouth and now there's gum in my hair," "All the other kids had cupcakes, Hershey bars, and other desserts, [...]

The Teacher Learns the Lesson: Reminiscing on 48 Years of Teaching

  Every future teacher has a lot to learn in college, but as I would soon find out after my college graduation day, nothing beats the “on the job training” you get when you go through that first year of teaching.  I was so excited when I received my first teaching job in Florida back [...]

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