Mrs. Brown, is this World War 3?

After the holiday break, my students entered the classroom well-rested and eager to discuss current events.   I had jokingly declared that we would start a war after the break, with the understanding before the events of the assassination of the Iranian general, Qasem Soleimani, that the war we would "start" would be world war one. [...]

Teaching High School In December: A Three-Point Survival Guide

For high school students, the month of December has lost its luster. There is no belief in Santa, and the elf is missing from its shelf. Replacing the holiday excitement is a mature appreciation of scarcity and disparity.   Adolescents are a blend of intellect and naivety. Their eyes are opening to a world that they [...]

“Why haven’t I learned that Harriet Tubman fought in the civil war?”

On a cold day in central New York, I had the fantastic opportunity to take 26 students to tour the Harriet Tubman National Park, located in Auburn, NY. After an enlightening hour, we loaded onto the yellow submarine (aka the school bus) and watched the movie Harriet at the local Movie Tavern.   By the end of the [...]

Getting Children to Understand The Value of Teaching Shakespeare

Every year, I get to the part in my high school curriculum where I start to introduce Shakespeare's Macbeth. And every year, the students complain. "Why do we have to read this?" "What's even the point of Shakespeare?" "I don't understand anything that's happening right now." "What is this?!" And every year, I tell them [...]

By |2019-11-12T12:18:10-05:00November 12th, 2019|Ask a Teacher, Common Core, High School|0 Comments

Dear Teachers, Parents, and Teachers Who Are Parents: You Do Not Need To Trust Your Teen, They Need To Trust You

Teenagers are weird and stupid. They make rash, half-cocked decisions creating consequences that bring parents to their knees. Since our oldest became a teenager two school years ago, I have prayed so frequently that my deceased, Catholic grandparents would be proud. I am not a good Christian or particularly spiritual, but being a mom of [...]

By |2019-11-08T11:41:21-05:00November 8th, 2019|High School|0 Comments