Sometimes you need to be really far away to get perspective and be reminded of what you already know. As I write this, the eight thousand miles between myself and the schools I work in are illuminating the inside out, backward, and upside down nature of our education system. I'm am talking about...Read More.
"Why?" he asks, over and over, as I attempt to narrate a series of historical events. I'm not prepared for these questions and I'm surprised, and a little disappointed in myself, that I was caught off guard.
But who has adequate answers to the "Why?" questions when you're trying to...Read More.
Who are your people? I mean, your people at work, your community of like-minded folks who make you laugh and appreciate you. Who are the people who help you muddle through the messiness of our education system and with whom you discover new trails to travel?Read More.
The end of the school year can bring up a lot of feelings for a lot of people working in schools. As we clean out our classrooms, we may come across half-finished projects, stacks of papers we never got around to grading, and files of material that we'd intended on using for a unit on something...Read More.
I know a vacation is coming when stacks of books next to my bed start growing. I've started to notice that building those stacks makes the final weeks of the year easier -- the visual reminder of the upcoming break.Read More.
If I was still in the classroom, I'd divert from the plans I'd etched out for this week and I'd teach a few lessons on justice -- what it means, how it's attained -- by examining something that happened in Guatemala at the end of last week. Something happened in that Central American country...Read More.
Here in California, we're mid-way through the spring testing frenzy. This is a challenging time for many of us working in and with public schools, as well as for kids themselves. I don't like it; all kinds of feelings and thoughts come up for me that don't make me an effective educator.Read More.
Hold on there, Randy Turner. Why are you issuing a, "Warning to Young People: Don't Become a Teacher"? Who are you to declare such a cautionary injunction? I'm annoyed by your lack...Read More.
Like many of us committed to public education, I'm constantly searching for what's working and what can be replicated. This year I've discovered two essential ingredients for any successful school system to be effective. Think of these ingredients as the yeast and flour of any kind of bread --...Read More.
Let me start with this: We need poetry. We really do. Poetry promotes literacy, builds community, and fosters emotional resilience. It can cross boundaries that little else can. April is National Poetry Month. Bring some poetry into your hearts, homes, classrooms and schools. Here are...Read More.