The Second Quarter Blues

The weeks between Thanksgiving and the New Year are often cited as the most wonderful time of the year... except when they are the worst. In schools that begin around Labor Day, the Second Quarter - or second grading period - typically stretches from November to January. Due to holidays, concerts, sporting events, interruptions, and the [...]

Dear Administrators: Don’t Move Ineffective Teachers to a Lower Grade; Help Them Improve

Guest Writer: Shawnta S. Barnes The great school mix up is one strategy elementary principals use to remove ineffective teachers from upper elementary grades, the grades where state standardized tests are taken.  Apparently, moving these teachers to an ‘easier’ grade will magically fix the problems they faced in their upper-grade classroom.  There are a few [...]

Is Adult Drama the Elephant in the Classroom?

Why teacher’s professional issues are more important than student’s concerns when building effective professional learning communities. By Laura D. Brown Learning Styles, Collaborative Learning, Project-Based Learning (PBL) — these are just three of the many instructional approaches that I have been trained to implement during my twenty-two-year teaching career. All of the above-mentioned approaches have [...]

By | 2017-12-18T22:27:15+00:00 November 5th, 2017|Instruction&Curriculum, Principals' Corner|0 Comments

How My School Attained Blue Ribbon Status

On Thursday, September 28th, Good Hope Middle School (the school where I teach) was one of 342 schools (35 of the middle or junior high institutions) designated a Blue Ribbon School. Since then, a few of my fellow teachers asked me "How did we earn such a distinction?", "What does your school do differently?", or, [...]

What Opening 100 Sixth Graders’ Lockers Taught Me About Kids

She was running late for the departing Friday bus. I saw her as she laid there on the floor, sobbing, as other staff members patiently held 100 buses to send the nearly 800 students home for the weekend. "I want my mommmmmmy!" She wailed, with the tears waterfalling down her face. Here lay the sister of [...]