learning environment

Why Curiosity Wilts and How to Make It Bloom Again


I read a lot in my elementary years. Growing up in the 1980’s communist Poland I spent a lot of time in the cowboys-and-Indians world of Winnetou and Old Shatterhand. I’d relive the main characters’ stories with an older friend who introduced me to this world and lent me books I’d devour in spare time. […]

A Classroom Mistake

kindergarten classroom

I’ve been thinking about mistakes in the classroom…mostly the ones I make. The first one that comes to mind happened when I was teaching first graders. I had put up a wonder wall and received lots of great questions and wonders. One day, when reading some of the wonders in our group, I read a […]

Likes and Dislikes


What is your favorite thing to do with a group of young children? What kinds of activities make you excited? What types of materials do you avoid? Oh, come on. You know that you purposely avoid doing certain types of activities or avoid using certain types of materials. Me? I don’t like glitter. I will […]

Education Is Like a Three-Legged Stool

Anyone who has worked with me can attest to the mantra I believe wholeheartedly: “Education is like a three legged stool. The school is one leg, the student is another, and the parents are the third. It takes all legs holding up their load for the stool to stand.” All legs have an equal responsibility, […]

Starbucks My Classroom: Creating A 21st Century Learning Space


The picture you see above is of my students and myself after I received a technology grant, which I used to purchase Chromebooks so that my students can learn using 21st century technology. I already have 21st century technology. Now, I am on a mission to bring a 21st century learning space to my chemistry […]

What is Play?

dramatic play

I recently spoke with the new director of a “Religious Exempt” preschool that wanted to improve her school. It had been grossly neglected, both by the church in which it was housed, and by the former director. The current director had workers fix the holes in the walls, clean dirt from floors, and install a […]

When You Can’t Relate to Your Students’ Experiences

Saras book

When the children in your class are facing adversity in ways you’ve never experienced – or possibly can’t even imagine – how are you supposed to relate to them? Considering how important the relationship between teacher and student is to academic and future success, you’ll want to know what these children need from you and […]

Yes – A Powerful Word


I’ve been around the preschool block a few times. I’ve been in numerous classrooms and heard a variety of teachers interact with a myriad of kids. I’ve taught preschoolers that are now adults making their ways in the world. (Wait, that’s an unnerving thought.) And, often in a classroom, the word I hear more often […]

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