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New Year, New … Approach to Teaching?

Self-Reflection in the New Year

By Kristen Fraine

With the New Year just starting there’s plenty of chatter amongst friends, family, and colleagues about everyone’s goals for their own personal “New Year, New You” ambitions.  As a teacher, I find myself doing this sort of self-reflection and goal setting both at the start of the school year and the start of the calendar year. It’s a sort of mental reset that’s nice to have twice a year, but can be difficult because self-reflection isn’t always easy. I always find these conversations an awkward combination of exciting, stressful and invigorating.

So I started to think about it like a lesson plan – how would I ask my students to reflect and set goals? Can I scaffold this life-lesson for myself? Continue reading New Year, New … Approach to Teaching?

teacher voices

Listen to Teacher Voices

What’s on the mind of a teacher on the first day of school?

Most of us remember what it felt like to be a student on the first day of a new school year. The excitement of seeing friends, the uncertainty of finding the right classroom, and the distress over the first homework assignment.

But what about the adult at the front of the classroom?

Continue reading Listen to Teacher Voices

What are teachers reading this fall?


It’s important to always find some “me-time” even during the always-on-the-go school year.  Whether that time for you means diving into what interests you or it means broadening your knowledge by reading relevant educational articles, blogs, and texts, it can be difficult to know what you want to focus on during those ever-elusive little moments you sneak into your schedule.  We decided to reach out to real teachers to hear what has been on their “me-time” reading lists – asking for anything and everything – and this is what they had to say…

Continue reading What are teachers reading this fall?

8 Text-Dependent Reading Prompts to Get Your Students to “Own” the Text

Start assigning them tomorrow.

As a teacher, curriculum developer, and parent, I’m constantly seeking ways to allow young people to “take ownership” over a piece of text and build strong reading “muscles” along the way. Below, I’ve listed some of my favorite text-dependent prompts (most of which were crafted with former colleagues at The Writers’ Express and Amplify—strong shout out to them).

Continue reading 8 Text-Dependent Reading Prompts to Get Your Students to “Own” the Text

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Real Strategies from Real Teachers

Adapting to a New Group of Students

Starting off the year is challenging in numerous ways, but for me, it’s been interesting to see how each class takes on a different tone or personality.  With that in mind, I’ve found it’s helpful to have some classroom management ideas in your back pocket so that you can flex to the needs of the group of students you have.

Here are a roundup of ideas that were shared in a recent online conversation amongst Loyola Maryland faculty, students and alum: Continue reading Real Strategies from Real Teachers

Providence Teachers, ECET2 Teachers

Providence Teachers Share Wisdom and Laughter

The question to kick off the small group conversation was simple enough: What successes have you had in the first two weeks of school?

Six Providence, Rhode Island school teachers—previously unknown to each other—leaned into the hotel ballroom tables in an effort to shield themselves from the hubbub at the other thirty-some tables in the room. Then conversation broke out, deliberate and organized at first:

Continue reading Providence Teachers Share Wisdom and Laughter

Teacher Voices From the First Day of School

We hope you’re looking forward to–or have already launched–a successful start of school.

Whether this is your first day in the classroom or you’ve experienced decades of “first days,” one thing is certain–you’re feeling a flood of thoughts and emotions. In the moments before the crowd of fresh faces clammers into your classroom for the first time, we want to know what’s top of mind.

Continue reading Teacher Voices From the First Day of School