effective teaching

How to Improve Your Kids’ Critical Thinking

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As a teacher, I often expect my students to think critically. If you’re a teacher I bet you expect the same. As a parent,you wish for your kids to be able to critically evaluate the choices an important situation offers to make the smart, most beneficial decision. I know I do and while I realize […]

Mastery Learning: The Basics

Mastery learning doesn’t have to be scary. A lot of times when I talk about Mastery Learning with teachers, I can see them slowly start back away and sometimes even getting noticeably scared. I’ll be honest, itcanbe scary, but it doesn’thaveto be. Giving up control, managing aself-paced classroom, and transitioning toMastery Learningcan be done if […]

Personalized v. Differentiated Instruction

Personalized learning and differentiated learning are big buzzwords in education right now. Did you think they were the same thing? As more catch phrases, tag lines, and buzzwords get added to the educational world, it’s getting more and more difficult to determine what it all means, and more importantly, how it all applies to our […]

Teachers, Which Mic Will We Choose?

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I owned a Grandmaster Flash record. I bought LL Cool J’s Bigger & Deffer cassette tape when it first came out. I’ve seen De La Soul in concert. I thought I knew a little bit about hip hop. Well, it turns out that that is all I know. A little bit. But I am always […]

This Sucks!

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This sucks!!! This is awesome!!! If you’re reading this piece and you work with children, then the chances are good that you’ve heard these responses numerous times. The first onewe hate and the second onewe crave. To be quite honest, I hate the first response! It’s flip! It’s rude! And I can’t stand it when […]

Self-Paced DOES NOT Mean Self-Taught

Self-paced learning can be a great tool. If you’ve ever tried to implement mastery or self-paced learning in your classroom, or attempted a long-term project that is student-centered, you’ve probably tried it (or are still doing it) because, frankly…these things work. Anytime you can make your classroom more student-centered and meet the needs of more […]

Please Call The Cops ‘Cause You’re Killing Your Students!

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Cognitive Overload. Unfortunately, we do that a lot. We often overwhelm students with information when we present it to them. What’s worse, we teach them to do the same to others when they present. We are killing them. Well… We’re killing their learning… So, it is only fair we call the police on ourselves… Or […]

The Calling, the Work, and the Miracles

teaching

Educators everywhere immerse themselves into the work of impacting young lives because they love kids! Teaching is no ordinary job, and it takes an extraordinary teacher to overcome the many obstacles that children face. It takes an exceptional school leader to create a culture where children and adults have high expectations and can learn in […]

Tips For Imaginative Educators #12: Spice Things Up

“Variety’s the very spice of life That gives it all its flavour.” (Source: The Task(1785), Book II, “The Timepiece”William Cowper1731-1800) Most people likevariety; it keeps life interesting. Unfortunately, few people associate typical schools or classrooms with variety. Indeed, it is the routinization of patterns and behaviors that makes mostclassrooms run like well-oiled machines. In addition, […]

Removing Escape Hatches from Your Classroom

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A common theme I get asked about during my workshops is student motivation, or student effort. No matter what management techniques or systems you have in your classroom to maintain behavior, instilling a culture of working hard, or “grit” as some like to call it, is probably one of the most difficult things you can […]

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