teachin' school

lessons from distance learning

we had an interesting discussion during one of our recent faculty meetings over zoom this past week.  i had seen this topic on twitter: what have we learned that we can take into the fall when we go back to school?  so i posed this question to my teachers.  we got some interesting and thought-provoking… Continue reading lessons from distance learning

teachin' school

distance learning resources for high school teachers

i’m currently in week six of distance learning.  as a instructional technology coach, i felt well-equipped to jump into it.  and to be honest, it’s been relatively easy for me.  i’m very grateful for that.  but i’ve been observant, and i’ve fielded a lot of questions from my school’s teachers during this time.  i’ve also… Continue reading distance learning resources for high school teachers

teachin' school

teaching tip 70. never make big decisions in april.

april is the worst. it just is. in may, you can see the finish line.  things are winding down.  but in april, it’s still business as usual.  except the teachers are tired, the kids are restless, you’re in between state testing, there’s benchmarking, supplies are running out, school funds are dwindling…you get the idea. it’s just… Continue reading teaching tip 70. never make big decisions in april.

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teaching tip 73. there’s always that one. avoid her. or him.

every school has the negative nancy.  we’ll call her ms. x. she (or he) never sees the bright side.  she always looks for how something will negatively affect her.  she resists change and actively works against it.  she is stubborn and pushy.  she thinks she’s better than everyone else and the exception to every rule.  she longs… Continue reading teaching tip 73. there’s always that one. avoid her. or him.

teachin' school

teaching tip 72. they will tear a sub to shreds!

like sharks, they can smell blood in the water.  and by “they”, i mean your students.  your little angels will break a sub in just one day.  they will band together and refuse to do work, behave horribly, and get terrible notes from the substitute teacher. to ease this situation, prep the sub as best… Continue reading teaching tip 72. they will tear a sub to shreds!

teachin' school

teaching tip 8. don’t be the drowning lifeguard.

when i was 15, i got a job at a swimming pool in a rich neighborhood. the owner knew my dad, a former swim coach, and she basically just gave me the job. i was certified but wasn’t really ready for the responsibility of being a lifeguard. i could blow a whistle at running kids,… Continue reading teaching tip 8. don’t be the drowning lifeguard.

teachin' school

teaching tip 71. for the veteran teachers

this will be my 11th year of teaching.  looking back, it seems like i started teaching yesterday.  but here i am…11 years later.  it’s been so hard and so fun and so transforming.  i’m the person i am because i am a teacher. but as i start my year 11 and in a leadership position,… Continue reading teaching tip 71. for the veteran teachers

teachin' school

teaching tip 56. hang on until the end.

originally published on 4•13•15 | updated on 4•26•17 i’ve started counting down the days.  every teacher does no matter how long they’ve been at it.  the closer to the end of the year, the harder it is to do a good job.  it’s natural to get a little apathetic.  but you have to fight it… Continue reading teaching tip 56. hang on until the end.

goals · teachin' school · travel

so you want to go to SXSWedu… {updated}

this was my second time going to SXSWedu, and again, it was truly one of the best experiences of my life.  it was unlike any education conference i’ve ever been to.  here’s the main keynote from 2017 below.   if you’re planning to go, i have some advice: if you can, bring someone with you!  the… Continue reading so you want to go to SXSWedu… {updated}

teachin' school

teaching tip 69. time for some spring cleaning!

it’s about that time…the time for spring cleaning!  i’m in the process of doing this in my own classroom.  here’s some things to think about! clear out any unneeded papers, including memos, old graded papers you’re never handing back, notes from that meeting four months ago, information on kids from last semester or last year,… Continue reading teaching tip 69. time for some spring cleaning!

teachin' school

teaching tip 68. you can’t live at school.

one of the hardest things you will have to figure out is the work/home balance. it’s commendable to be a hard worker.  i remember that i would work all day and after school until six my first year.  i would also regularly bring home work or papers to grade.  you wanna know what happened?  i… Continue reading teaching tip 68. you can’t live at school.

teachin' school

teaching tip 67. use your f@&!-it bucket as needed. 

this one is a quick one… if it’s not working, chunk if in the fuck-it bucket.  this applies to classroom management techniques, lesson plans, room arrangement, your mentor, etc.  do what you gotta do to make it work for you whether that means adaptation, abandonment, or pressing pause for a little while. BUT, don’t give up… Continue reading teaching tip 67. use your f@&!-it bucket as needed. 

on my soapbox · teachin' school

teaching tip 66. avoid the drama (as much as you can)

schools work with people.  therefore, they are full of drama, especially when times are tough.  i know it’s hard to avoid it.  i love hearing the gossip. it’s in my nature. i’m nosy. i’m that person who was that kid who tried to listen in on adult conversations all the time to feel important. i’m… Continue reading teaching tip 66. avoid the drama (as much as you can)

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teaching tip 65. find your tribe. 

one of the things that i didn’t think would make that much of a difference, actually makes a huge difference in how much i enjoy teaching.  find your people, your tribe, your peeps, your squad.  teachers are social creatures usually.  we like to be together and we feed off of each others’ energy.  that’s been… Continue reading teaching tip 65. find your tribe. 

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teaching tip 64. don’t take it personally. 

don’t take it personally.  this is harder said than done. at least once a year, i get caught up in my feelings and break down. last year, it was on a day that I really shouldn’t have been at work in the first place. i was so sick. i should have called in and stayed… Continue reading teaching tip 64. don’t take it personally.