Can students form PLCs, too?

As a new curriculum director, one of my areas of interest is professional development.  I’m a big believer in using “in-house talent” when possible.  Our school system is blessed with outstanding teachers that have a wide-range of knowledge and gifts.  I’ve recently begun an after school professional learning community (one of those new educational buzz-phrases).

Attitude

As I get back to work after Christmas break, blogging is almost last on my “to do” list.  So, I post something from Charles Swindoll that is good for each of us to remember… “The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than

What can 6th Graders do about Human Trafficking? #endslavery

Last Thursday I got to go back to the classroom, this time to teach sixth graders about human trafficking.  (Keep in mind that my last fourteen years as an educator have been spent in K-2 classrooms.)  Our sixth grade teachers do a study on various cultures through a unit called Passport to Adventure.  They invite

Holiday hustle

One meeting at 9:30 (that lasted until 12:30), and another at 3:30.  Tomorrow: meeting at 7:45, leave for North Webster at 11:15, back for meeting at 3:30.  Thursday: present at our intermediate school all morning, then back to elementary for school-wide planning meeting.  Friday: meeting at 9:00, then leave at 11:00 for meeting in  Fort

Technology take-off

Wow…in the past two weeks I have done more technologically-speaking than in my last five years.  As a second-grade teacher, I never felt like I had extra time to “explore the world of technology”.  As a new curriculum director, however, I see the value of doing whatever I’m expecting the teachers in our corporation to

Slowing down to move forward

For the past 11 years, I have had the privilege of teaching in a small-town school district.  I taught second grade with a wonderful team of teachers who listened to and shared best practices.  Then, at the end of last school year, I was given the chance to be our district’s first curriculum director.  My

The Art of Questioning

What do you wonder?  Do you constantly form questions about the world around you?  If you are an elementary student, your answer is probably “yes.”  If you are an adult, the answer is “sometimes.”  If you are an adolescent, your answer is probably, “What are you talking about?”  By the time students are in seventh

Trust me…it gets easier

My children (along with the kids at our church) are working to raise money for Kids Against Hunger.  In January, we will package 20,000 meals to be dispersed to those dying of starvation.  I love this very real way for my own children to be involved in helping others.  In order to do this, we

Word Clouds and Technology in the Classroom

With the adoption of Common Core State Standards, my job has become more valuable.  This year in Common Core states, our content-area teachers in grades 6-12 must teach Common Core Literacy Standars with their academic standards.  Some are taking this in stride, realizing that they have already been doing it.  Others are panicking by yet

Motivating Boy Readers

What do humor and action have in common?  They appeal to boys.  Most boys actually enjoy being read to in their early years.  But what happens once they turn 8, 9, 10 years old?  They want to be running around…playing, laughing, making strange noises with their bodies.  Even if they don’t eagerly choose to grab

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