Instruction&Curriculum

Tier 1 should be BAE (Before Anything Else)! – Education Article

Intervention, magic bullets, and remediation are terms that are all too common these days. We hear the echoes of these cringe-worthy words in meetings and PLCs across campuses and districts. Somehow, over the years, these elements have taken center stage as some of the leading roles in education. How did this happen? How did all of these other components take the place of what should be our first love…Tier 1 instruction? It’s clear we have continued to put the cart…

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Self-Care Is Priority One for This Teacher – Education Article

January is finally over. I swear this month had 974 days in it. After returning from Winter Break I felt as if I just could not keep up with myself. There is always so much to do and so very few hours in the day to balance everything. Normally this is when my really bad habits form, like skipping meals, drinking too much soda and eating too much junk food, foregoing date night with my significant other and sleeping in…

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Preparing Students For Teacher Absences – Education Article

I was gone two days this week because my fiancé had back surgery. Two. Whole. Days. This may not seem like much to most, but I teach special education with some very routine-oriented students and this was a huge whammy in their little lives. I know we want our classrooms to become autonomous and for kids to be flexible when life happens to their teachers, but sometimes I think we forget about how important we are in their little lives.…

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Why School Father & Daughter Dances are Antiquated – Education Article

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner.  Besides being bombarded with reminders to agree to bring an item for the Valentine’s Day class party on Sign-Up Genius, parents are also sent flyers about the father and daughter dance.  As our society continues to change, our schools remain stagnant and keep hanging onto antiquated ideas. I assert father and daughter dances are one of those ideas. I will admit, as a mother of twin sons, I have attended a mother and…

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I’m a Teacher and My Child is a Trans-Man – Education Article

I have a confession to make.  I’ve sat on a “secret” for a while, trying to figure out how to understand it.  It’s taken me a LONG time to get to this point, but it has to be said.  My oldest child, age 23, born Lauren, is a trans-man named Christian. As a conservative, religious teacher, there are so many moving pieces to this puzzle for me. I know what my political party “believes” about this. I know what my…

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Responding to DeVos’s Negligent #SOTU19 Response – Education Article

With Donald Trump’s 2019 State of the Union address in the rear-view mirror, we are left to reflect on and process the 82-minute sermon. Naturally, education received some attention in the speech, as it has for countless other SOTUs. This time, Trump shared 16 particular words about his education policy: “To help support working parents, the time has come to pass school choice for America’s children.” Despite issues around school violence, arming teachers, and inequitable district funding consistently swirling around…

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Teaching Romeo and Juliet to Beginning Level English Learners – Education Article

Guest Writer: Karissa Knox Sorrell Teaching English Learners who are new to the country and are non-English speakers is a challenge at every grade, but it can be particularly challenging at the high school level when students have to earn credits, pass multiple state end-of-course exams, and engage with complex texts on a daily basis. With so much at stake and a huge language gap, it can be very difficult for both English Learners and teachers of these English Learners to…

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Cory Booker Is No Friend Of Public Education – Education Article

The field of Democratic presidential candidates is wide open. Senator Elizabeth Warren, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Senator Cory Booker, and Senator Kamala Harris have all dipped their toes in the chilly water that is the 2020 election. Choices are usually positive in most things, except when it comes to school choice.  Of all the politicians mentioned above, Cory Booker, the former mayor of Newark, New Jersey is the least friendly to public education.  He is a Republican in a Democrat’s suit.  If you…

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Opinion: If You Can’t Say “Black Lives Matter” Then You Can’t Use Any Quotes from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. – Education Article

Secondly, let us keep the issues where they are. The issue is injustice. […] Now we’ve got to keep attention on that. That’s always the problem with a little violence. You know what happened the other day, and the press dealt only with the window breaking. (15.1–2, 4–6) This is a quote from the last speech given by Dr. Martin Luther King delivered April 3, 1968, at the Mason Temple in Memphis, TN. I’ve listened to this speech numerous times…

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Opinion: Watch Your Tone, Fix Your Face, and Other Unspoken Rules for Educators of Color – Education Article

“Mrs. Morrison, you’re going to be such an anomaly when you go to your interviews. They’ll snap you right up!” Harmless statement? Encouraging? I beg to differ. To the outside world this comment may have seemed innocuous, but to me, a Black educator, I knew what it really meant. So, let’s unpack this, shall we? A few years ago I was gearing up to change school districts as my husband and I were planning to move to a new city.…

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The Implications of ‘Surviving R. Kelly’ in our Classrooms – Education Article

I spent the last two evenings watching Lifetime’s documentary “Surviving R. Kelly.” If you haven’t seen it, watch it. Watch it now. I was in college at the University of Illinois at Chicago at the time his infamous “pee tape” became famous. I remember people in my classes telling me, through hushed whispers and giggles, that R. Kelly likes to pick up underage girls at the Rock and Roll McDonald’s downtown and then film himself peeing on them. It was…

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Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s Letter from Birmingham Jail – Education Article

In April in 1963, Dr. Martin Luther King was jailed in a Birmingham Jail after he defied a state court’s injunction and led a march of protestors to urge an Easter boycott of white-owned stores due to mistreatment of blacks. The letter defends the strategy of nonviolent resistance to racism. It says that people have a moral responsibility to break unjust laws and to take direct action rather than waiting potentially forever for justice to come through the courts. Responding to being referred to…

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Teacher Attendance Does Matter, but I Still Unapologetically Take Days Off at My School – Education Article

Yesterday, my fellow Indy K12 writer David McGuire Wrote, “Teacher Attendance Matters.”  As a school principal, I know he is under pressure to ensure his students receive the best education.  The heart of his piece was to emphasize how teacher absences can bring challenges to schools including student achievement.  Teaching is one of the professions where bosses constantly question why teachers are using personal days or sick days. If you don’t want teachers to use these days, then why even…

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5 Things We Need to Know About The L.A. Teacher’s Strike – Education Article

  ______________________________________________________________________ Due to the actions of teachers across the country last year, especially in Oklahoma, West Virginia, and Kentucky, many have called 2018 “The Year Of The Teacher.” But 2019 might just see a wave of “Red For Ed,” as teachers in one of the largest school districts stage a significant strike involving over 30,000 educators, serving 640,000 students. The following is an attempt to harness the five most significant things we (educators and advocates of education) need to…

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Forget Allies and Advocates, I Needed an Activist – Education Article

We (educators) like to think that we’re advocates for students. I’ve even been guilty myself of living in the nobleness of the word. However, as our current climate (societal and educational) continues to toil with inclusivity and what it means to be responsive to ALL, I grow impatient with our “nobleness.” Case in point, social media is exploding with a story of a high school wrestler who was forced to cut off his dreadlocks to prevent the forfeit of a match.…

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Having a Tupac State of Mind: Supporting Our Students that Grow from Concrete – Education Article

“We wouldn’t ask why a rose that grew from the concrete has damaged petals, in turn, we would all celebrate its tenacity, we would all love its will to reach the sun, well, we are the roses, this is the concrete and these are my damaged petals, don’t ask me why, thank God, and ask me how.”― Tupac Shakur, The Rose That Grew from Concrete “The Rose that Grew from Concrete” is a popular poem turned book of poetry by Tupac Shakur…

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There are Thousands of Students Like Andrew Johnson Sitting in Our Schools – Education Article

Dejected. Embarrassed. Defeated. Distraught. These are all the words that came to mind when I saw the video of Andrew Johnson, the wrestler from Buena High School in Atlantic County, New Jersey who was told by a referee with a history of racist behavior he had to cut his dreadlocks or forfeit his match during a  meet Thursday night. By now social media has exploded with videoes of the act of Johnson’s hair being cut and shuddered at the thought that in…

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America Already has a wall, it’s made up of teachers. – Education Article

I debated whether to encourage my sophomore Global History students to watch President Trump’s address on Tuesday, January 8, 2019.  Since 2016, it has been difficult to navigate how to incorporate civics and current events into my social studies classroom.  I desire student awareness, but I am concerned that any discussion of his speech, or his presidency in general, might lead to parental concerns of misperceived bias on my part.  Furthermore, I don’t know if I can be as objective…

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