Many schools are embarking on a schoolwide professional journey that asks teachers to incorporate discipline-specific literacy practices (reading, writing, viewing, reasoning, and communicating) in ways that mirror the practices of experts. This is disciplinary literacy — a necessary shift in instruction and learning that will help students be more prepared
When Cecily, my youngest daughter, was learning to cook, we spent time making a chart of the terms, conversions, and tools she kept reading in recipes and asking me about. While I still had to supervise some of her kitchen projects, this chart allowed her to
My mom was a believer in experiences. While I couldn’t detail the gifts I received over the years, I can still recall the scent of melting wax that we poured into sand candles and the roar of jet engines above the long-shuttered O’Hare Airport observation
Last weekend my husband and I began shopping for a mattress. We bounced on mattresses, laid down on mattresses, pushed buttons so our head or our feet would go up and down on mattresses. We tried out mattress after mattress, going from store to store
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, is a common condition that every teacher will most likely encounter in the classroom during his or her career. In fact, estimates place the number of school-aged kids who have an ADHD diagnosis at about 11%, or about 1
As I write this blog post, I’m about halfway through Ellin Keene’s latest book Engaging Children. I’ve long considered Ellin to be a kindred spirit. Her books and presentations have pushed my thinking and helped to refine my craft. So, it’s no surprise that Ellin’s
The final months of the school year can feel pretty sloggy. We’re tired, kids are restless, and it often feels like it doesn’t matter much anymore. After all, the year is nearly done! Summer is practically here! The standardized tests are over! Cue the Moviefest.
It may sound like common sense, but there are some basics that need to be in place in any classroom to engage students in learning. For starters, classroom teachers need to have their lesson plans ready and appropriate resources available, and students must also come
“I can’t do this,” I whispered to myself as I stared at my reflection in the old, bulky television strapped down on a sagging, metal cart.
I was holding a tattered VHS tape. It had been eaten and regurgitated countless times by the VCR, which was