relationships

This Is a School That Trust Built

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Schools are microcosms of our society. They reflect what we are, like it or not.  Schools are also places where children and adults have the ability to connect and support each other on their life’s journey.  Within these schools, we’ve talked about the importance of building capacity and emphasizing academics as ways to improve the […]

Spark

The first quarter of my 37th year as an educator is officially at its end. There is always an overwhelming feeling of fatigue at this time of the year and a welcome sense of relief in knowing that there is a bit of a respite before heading into the holiday-laden second quarter. This year, I […]

I Should Have Waited

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I help monitor 4 lunch shifts each day. It’s a busy and often loud time but it allows me to see every kid in the school, preK-5. I’m not gonna lie, my feet are tired by the time the last shift is over at 1:15. So, I could blame my mess-up on the fact that […]

It’s Up to Us: Bridging the Distance between Home and School

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While you may not see them, the parents or guardians of your students are in your classroom every day. As the primary caregivers of your students, they influence how your students think, feel, and react. Even though the ideal parent or guardian would be informed and supportive while providing a stable home environment and supervising […]

Where Has All the Singing Gone?

If I were to believe my early childhood students, singing with children is passe. Being a small sample (this class has thirty students), perhaps I am being overly harsh. But then again, prior classes had also moved into the dizzying array of YouTube videos for preschoolers. Blingy, fast-moving, cartoonish music videos have become the go-to […]

Jack

Jack and His Plans for Next Year: “Mr. Ramsey!” I try hard to ignore goofy Jack who, at 13, still doesn’t know how to raise his hand to get my attention. “Mr. Ramsey!” I grit my teeth. Don’t give in, I say to myself. Don’t even look his way. “Mr. Ramsey!” Trying to stay strong, […]

Head Start

My teaching career began thirty-five years ago in Coolidge, a little Arizona city located midway between Phoenix and Tucson. Before I received the call for an interview and subsequently traveled the desolate 70 mile freeway drive from the Valley, I barely knew of the city’s existence. By day, I taught Biology to freshman at the […]

The Red Thread

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Doris and Carl Malone sat at their usual table in The Forgotten Crumb enjoying the performances of slightly inebriated patrons searching for their fifteen minutes of fame at the karaoke microphone. The couple had met here nearly twenty-eight years before, fallen in love, and married on the very stage that was now a platform for […]

Your Classroom: You Make the Weather

Here’s a recent conversation between my wife and me: Danielle:“Don, it’s freezing outside, wear a coat.’ Me: It’s not that cold. Danielle:It’s windy? Do you know how strong the wind is? Don, the wind is blowing 50 miles an hour. Me: Is that a lot? Danielle: Don, think about driving a car, 50 miles an […]

How to Make a Teacher Smile

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Riding home from a friend’s house on a warm Friday night with my daughter is a privilege I know I wouldn’t have much longer. She is only twelve, but it won’t be long before her Friday nights are spent socializing with her peers while I anxiously await her safe return. So I cherish every moment. […]

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