Book Study in a Box

Book Study in a Box

I am currently participating in a book study on The New Pillars of Modern Teaching by Gayle Allen facilitated by Kathryn Laster @kklaster of Region 10. The book challenges educators to provide learners with choice in the time, place, medium, and socialness of their learning. Kathryn and her team have done an outstanding job of giving book study participants like me power over their learning in each of these areas throughout the book study. Continue reading

Cooperative Critical Writing

Cooperative Critical Writing Graphic

As we plan for improvement, writing is at the forefront of everyone’s mind on my campus, in my district, and across our state. We have been brainstorming practical and meaningful ways to incorporate more writing across academic areas in order to bolster and strengthen students’ skills. As I began brainstorming today, I realized that just writing more won’t entirely solve the problem because students who are struggling with how to write a complete sentence, for example, aren’t going to get any better at this skill by just being required to write more. And we’ve already got quality first instruction in place as well as small group interventions. Continue reading

Google Sheets Poster Printing HACK!

Google Sheets Poster Printing Hack

Years and years ago (like first year teaching years ago) I used to use Microsoft Excel to create multi-page posters that I could piece together to have great professional-looking typed posters without having to pay for poster printing. You should know, I am also a font snob and I am not in love with the font choices provided in the Microsoft suite (we can’t add fonts onto district computers). Ahhhh but the font choices in Google Apps… FANTASTIC!!! I haven’t had a use for this old poster-making hack again until recently, but thought it was worth a share in case you ever need to print a poster or large multi-page title in a pinch and/or on a budget! Continue reading

Use Your Desktop to Reinforce Positive Behaviors

desktop header

Every minute we have with our students has value. I am always looking for ways to get the most out of every moment. As an elementary school administrator, I walk through numerous classrooms each and every day. Something that inevitably occurs in every class, even with the best planning and execution, is the teacher’s desktop from his or her computer is occasionally projected big and upfront for all to see. Even if it is only seen for a couple seconds while switching between programs, often all students see this image (or something similar) multiple times per day: Continue reading

Create a Purposeful Plan for Procedures

Purposeful Plan - Header (1)

I think we can all agree that it is so important to explicitly think through and teach expectations and procedures in our schools and classrooms in order to set ourselves up for a successful school year, yet we often don’t take the time to do so (or take the time to do so well – by reteaching and practicing with students) for fear of falling behind on the ever-increasing curriculum requirements.

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5 Quick Ways to Share Positive Feedback

5 Quick Ways to Share Positive Feedback (1)

I love¬†creating and sending quick notes of encouragement to teachers and friends. My favorite go-to for creating these was an eCard type app (it was called Red Stamp), but it is no longer available in the app store, and it stopped working (boo). I haven’t found any other ecard app that compares and have been looking for creative ways to pass on positivity and praise. Whether you are experiencing the same sadness over this particular app, or you just want some fresh ideas for sharing feedback, read on for 5 ways to quickly and easily provide positive feedback. Continue reading