For the Bane and Enlightening of Humankind: Exploring the Similarities Between the HIV/AIDS and COVID-19 Pandemics

During my freshman year at Boston University in 1982, neither I nor any of my fellow acting majors had heard of AIDS. I was newly out and proud, but I couldn’t have been more out of touch or apolitical. I blithely thought at the time that Reagan, with his rouged cheeks and shoeblack hair, was … Continue reading For the Bane and Enlightening of Humankind: Exploring the Similarities Between the HIV/AIDS and COVID-19 Pandemics

Advice and Inspiration from a Retiring Teacher

(Although the COVID-19 pandemic has colored every aspect of education as we once knew it and will continue to alter the typical school routine for some time afterward, I wrote the following article as if the uncertain times we’re living through now hadn’t occurred. I’ve endured many changes to the education system, both good and … Continue reading Advice and Inspiration from a Retiring Teacher

Ace that Teaching Job Interview: 10 Questions You’ll Definitely Be Asked (Edutopia featured article)

Congratulations!  You’ve gotten an interview appointment for a teaching position at a new school—or possibly for a different position at your current school. This is an important first step, but there will likely be a number of qualified candidates vying for the same spot. So how can you distinguish yourself from the pack and land … Continue reading Ace that Teaching Job Interview: 10 Questions You’ll Definitely Be Asked (Edutopia featured article)

Valuing Critical Thinking in Teachers: Advocating for Educator Voice and Choice

One of modern education’s top goals has been to imbue our students with critical thinking skills. We do not want to be merely educating sheep. Yet heaven forbid teachers themselves think critically about the curriculum and pedagogies that are foisted upon them! According to Ruenzel (2014) writing in Education Week, “…too much of the discussion … Continue reading Valuing Critical Thinking in Teachers: Advocating for Educator Voice and Choice

Educator Autonomy: Honoring Teacher Input Leads to Investment and Innovation

It's a shame whenever an educator—especially one who has just learned an exciting, effective teaching technique they know their students will love and benefit from—suddenly pauses and thinks: But I won’t be able to actually use that great strategy in my classroom because… I’m not supposed to deviate from the textbook or mandated curriculum, it … Continue reading Educator Autonomy: Honoring Teacher Input Leads to Investment and Innovation

Teaching Whole-Class Novels: New Book Available Now

There’s room and reason to teach whole-class novels, right along with honoring student independent reading choice. ELA expert Robert Ward explains how to do both, as he shares three decades of success expanding the literacy skills of students at every level of proficiency. But learning the nuts and bolts of reading and writing doesn’t mean … Continue reading Teaching Whole-Class Novels: New Book Available Now

Practicing Presence and Daily Mindfulness for Teachers

Use these eight words when practicing mindfulness in the classroom and remembering the importance of presence for teachers: Patience Relaxation Empathy Serenity Engagement Non-judgment Centeredness Even temperament Patience In order to be truly present, we can learn to not rush the moment or seek to hurry to the next event. Choosing patience allows us to … Continue reading Practicing Presence and Daily Mindfulness for Teachers

10 Ways to Avoid Benefit Mindset Burnout and Compassion Fatigue

Compassion fatigue can occur when our expressions of empathy and our acts of altruism begin to have a negative effect on our lives. A crucial component of living the benefit mindset is that in order to support the wellbeing of others, we must be sure to attend to our own health and happiness as well. This … Continue reading 10 Ways to Avoid Benefit Mindset Burnout and Compassion Fatigue

A Benefit Mindset Helps Students Overcome Trauma (Education Week featured article)

Every student benefits from curriculum and assignments that take them outside of themselves and their own personal (and perhaps painful) worlds. How can anyone say they’re only interested in a narrow range of subjects or activities if they haven’t been consistently exposed to people, places, topics, and situations that may be initially foreign, yet on … Continue reading A Benefit Mindset Helps Students Overcome Trauma (Education Week featured article)

Why Teachers Should Think Twice Before Blaming Parents (EdWeek featured article)

With so much talk today about the importance of mindsets in education, one of the best ways to prepare for a successful parent/teacher conference is for the teacher to enter into those meetings with a positive attitude about how much responsibility each parent bears for the actions and accomplishments of their child. Through decades of … Continue reading Why Teachers Should Think Twice Before Blaming Parents (EdWeek featured article)