The Unintentional Racism of “Science of Character” #CharacterDay

Colorblindness is Racism, it’s Also Poor Design This is a cautionary tale that I hope can serve as an example of the need to talk about race in the faculty room, meetings and in the classroom. For me, this as an example of what not to bring into our schools and to know how to examine what we as teachers are being asked to teach. … Continue reading The Unintentional Racism of “Science of Character” #CharacterDay

Your Normal School Structure & Mode of Operating Isn’t COVID-19 Compliant

Every classroom in the world has changed in some way during these last six months. Disinfectant wipes, spaced out desks and furniture removed just to name a few of those changes. But those examples aren’t how we change school operations to become COVID compliant. For months now, we have needed to re-evaluate how we operate our schools to be COVID compliant and we will need … Continue reading Your Normal School Structure & Mode of Operating Isn’t COVID-19 Compliant

Welcome New International School Teachers! Your journey is much like your students.

Welcome to the adventures you are about to begin! The First weeks are a blur as you learn how to shop, about the region you are in, trying out some words and phrases in a foreign language and even how toilets work in your new apartment! There’s so much to learn which is second only to the excitement and nerves you walk around with all … Continue reading Welcome New International School Teachers! Your journey is much like your students.

Asking “Why” At Your School Can Be Dangerous. (Lean on a Design Process)

Forget simply trying to deal with Cow Paths, the sacristy of time and resources makes many schools an act-now-ask-questions-never environment. Schools have limited time for teachers work with peers as much of a teacher’s time is with students, rightly, but that creates an issue, “Is our teacher/peer time a place to consider and study our problems or a place to act quickly?” Sadly, organizing teacher … Continue reading Asking “Why” At Your School Can Be Dangerous. (Lean on a Design Process)

100% Female Names for My Tests Next Year

I can’t remember where I saw it but the fact that math books portray way more men than women in the problems offered seems like a real truth that I had simply never given any thought to. I knew instantly that I would be digging into this problem and doing something about it. What I didn’t know was the statement that I decided to Make … Continue reading 100% Female Names for My Tests Next Year

Give Your Student a Pencil – Ultimate Guide Why We Give Pencils, One Tweet at a Time

If you are reading edutwitter, I’m sure to bet that you have seen a slow-burning debate over pencils or even this article from tolerace.org. More precisely, “Should teachers unconditionally give a student a pencil in class?” I have collected more than 100 Tweets and have curated the conversation with some amazing responses for you to enjoy. First of all, we must reside in two camps, … Continue reading Give Your Student a Pencil – Ultimate Guide Why We Give Pencils, One Tweet at a Time

Jim Ellis – By the Numbers (40)

I turn 40 years old today. I’ve lived in three countries and visited 27 countries. I’ve taught six different subjects in middle school; Math, History, EAL, Science, Technology, Reading. My mate and I have had 12 years together, so far. Hospitalized twice, both while 18 years old. Thrown more than 800 bowls on a pottery wheel. In the United States, I’ve lived in only a … Continue reading Jim Ellis – By the Numbers (40)

That Terrible Gamification Problem

An old and very bad idea I had was the gamification of the overland trails and something called the Indian Removal Act. Yes, I made the same mistake 20 years ago and is what John Meehan is selling today in his new book, “EDrenaline Rush.”  Yes, it is actually called Edrenaline Rush and this picture is from his Twitter Profile. And yes, you guessed it, … Continue reading That Terrible Gamification Problem

Use of Data with Your Whole Class – Super Effectively

I first clued into the power of what simple data can do to a class my first year teaching. One day I tallied up the scores to a test and wrote onto the whiteboard how many students received an: A, B, C, D, F or below. This suddenly took each section of science I was teaching to near silence. This was uncommon in my class … Continue reading Use of Data with Your Whole Class – Super Effectively

Take Two Days to Plan Your School’s Next Four Years

Two day for four year of plans. Decent value right? If you need to have a road-map for your school that lasts well into the future and is grounded in a hard self-study, just give yourself two days. School leaders, you all know how hard it is to find two days, but the value of having an extended road-map and deliverables established is so critical. … Continue reading Take Two Days to Plan Your School’s Next Four Years