Series: White People Homework: Let’s talk (15)

Thank you to Larry Ferlazzo

Series: White People Homework- What’s in a name? (14) (Updated)

We’re not a football family in our house. And like many areas of fandom, it’s okay–no judgment on those who love football, and as far as we know we aren’t judged by others. Wouldn’t matter. So forgive me for not knowing who Emmanuel Acho is. Turns out, he’s pretty amazing! And I am so grateful for other media formats who bring people such as him into my life and help me learn. And I am an ELA/ELL teacher; however, full disclosure, I was not an English major in college. Most of what I learned about mechanics, style guides, and conventions…

Summer Series of Saves: Teachers Talk.

Be centered on what matters to you.  Just wanted to capture a wonderful chat I stumbled onto–good ideas and inspiring to focus on what matters. And: I want to share with students that teachers walk the walk–we want our students to love their reading and writing lives as much as we do. I love these questions as a strategy to use with independent reading! #vatechat https://t.co/ulmSsnl12Z — Josh Thompson (@jthompedu) July 19, 2018 Starting the countdown for our 2nd twitter chat! Join us on July 18 to chat about independent reading. Can’t wait to see you there! #VATEchat pic.twitter.com/2oORhyXakw —…

Part I: Renaissance Fairness

Sometimes we teachers may grow cynical about the ‘career and college’ ready mission statement. It’s not hard to see why: when our nation voted gave corporations the same voting rights as human beings we knew we were in deep trouble. To avoid that rabbit hole, I’ll just say this: we still work, and one of our jobs as teachers is to show students the opportunities and pathways so they can make the work-life decisions for themselves with the best and rigorous information. And a secret to all this is — not all work is bad. Far from it. Modeling passion…

WIHWT: Taking Sides

I wish I had written this: Taking Sides: Revolution or Oppression. Our children’s fears indict us all. Teaching critical thinking skills is not an option. It never was, but seemed to be kept for the elite or college-bound. One cannot teach a skill in isolation. It cannot be a stand-alone, one-off concept. Skills must always ALWAYS be connected to a bigger understanding and knowledge building. Silo teaching “may help teachers, but does nothing to help students.” It’s imperative to make the distinction between the skill, its assessment, mastery and its application. About three years ago many teachers collaborated to create a unit…

Pathos, logos, and ethos take a holiday.

In addition to short films, commercials can be another valuable asset. Many commercials live on multiple places on Bloom’s Taxonomy, and certainly any argumentative reading and writing unit worth its salt contains at least one or two commercials to support a conversation about pathos, ethos, and logos. I just found this site this morning. This first ad can bring up so many relatable conversation points. To quote John Spencer, “What’s so odd is that people have been creating art, writing letters, and talking about their food for years. Museums are filled with foodies and selfie shots. We just call them…

Talk Tuesday

The intent of “Talk Tuesdays” was twofold: to use the readings/texts in a purposeful way, and invite students to think about discussion, and practice. Well, that is the intent, and we all know about roads paved, etc. But I think I became too distracted or mired in the concept of ‘accountable talk.’ I’m not sure if you know my connotative negative bias toward the word ‘accountable’ when it comes to students. Accountable talk is a buzzkill idea. There. I said it. However, sometimes students think it’s going to be a free-for-all talk fest, and, well, sometimes it is. And that’s okay. I…

Match up: texts, teachers, and students

This morning I promised myself not to touch either hand-held device, my cell phone or i-Pad, for at least five hours today. So far, so good. Lately I’ve acquired the odd habit of setting up arbitrary goals for myself, little mind games where only I know the rules. For example, in June, I told myself ‘no beer for a year.’ I really like beer, and though not trying to punish myself, just wanted to see if I could do it. Last night it got a little tricky because all I wanted to do was go out for a beer and…

Email Extremism

Fascinating report from WBUR that links to two separate articles about emails in the workplace. Inspired by Principal Gerry Brooks, I wrote my own take on the content of emails not too long ago, and this ties in with the productivity, or lack thereof, with emails. From the outset, I’ll say that though I don’t feel any grand accomplishment in compiling emails by name and then hitting the delete key en masse, I do sometimes need this mindless activity. Every minute of our waking hours shouldn’t be constructed as ‘productive.’ To me that is such a Puritan-Western-worker-bee mindset. However, these studies…