learning strategies

What Does Growth Look Like for a Student Who Isn’t Having Success on Standardized Tests?

Over the course of my career, I’ve had some years where my students’ standardized test scores were on the rise, and other years where they stagnated. Rarely did these scores correlate to the amount of growth each learner had experienced during our time working together.One thing I know to be true is that little things matter a lot when it comes to recognizing student growth. 

Why Taking Risks in the Classroom Pays off for Students—and Teachers

My sixth graders entered the room, found their seats and in typical fashion, I asked them to take out their homework—but it wasn’t a typical day. It was my first experiment flipping our classroom. As the groans from my students got louder, I knew something wasn’t right. I panicked.
"Don't let your fear of what could happen make nothing happen."
Doe Zantamata

How This UN Role-Playing Game Helps Teachers Solve Complex Challenges Together

What does it mean to truly collaborate? For a group of teachers at my district last spring, it meant stepping outside their own roles and trying on someone else’s point of view.

Big Data, Different Visions: Why Charter Networks Are Investing Heavily in Data Teams

At a time when qualified teachers are in high demand, there’s another role that districts are looking to fill: data experts. Charter management organizations, which operate publicly-funded schools, are making million-dollar investments on data teams and shaking up staffing norms in the process. Today, education job boards feature openings such as strategic data facilitators, data analysts, and data coordinators.

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Teachers and Technology Must Not Be an Either/Or Dichotomy

We must either: integrate technology or support teachers; teach traditionally or personalize learning; support districts or support charters; fund edtech or fund schools; individualize learning or humanize instruction.

How Senior Capstone Projects Let Students Research—and Present—Their Passions

Listening to Nicole’s impassioned and detailed presentation on the Puerto Rican debt crisis and its impact on the island’s healthcare system, it was easy to forget a high school senior was addressing a group of 100 students and teachers.

What Every School Can Learn from This Age-Old Approach to Nurturing Independence

The first thing you'll notice when stepping into Malina Marshall's preschool classroom is the size of the furniture. You'll feel like Gulliver arriving at the land of Lilliput. The tables, chairs, sofa, sink, coat rack, cubbies and bookshelves are all miniature versions of the their adult-sized counterparts.This, in and of itself, is not that unusual of a sight to see in a preschool classroom. The thing you will notice next though is much more impressive: a room full of self-directed two-year olds purposefully going about their work cycle.

How a Focus on Independent Learning Transformed My Most At-Risk Students

The first time I saw Kevin, he shuffled into my classroom, staring sideways towards the floor. It was the third day of the new school year—he hadn’t made it to my room the first two days.“Hi. You must be Kevin,” I said with a smile.Kevin didn’t look at me. He only grunted a slight noise and looked around for a place to sit. As it turned out, Kevin was mostly non-verbal with emotional and learning disabilities. He was also an apathetic student who lacked the ability and desire to self-start or persist with educational tasks.

It’s Not Just Teachers: Tech Coaches Must Become Facilitators, Too

The EdSurge Fusion conference back in October surfaced some unexpected “aha” moments for me. The theme was personalized learning and heading into the conference I anticipated gaining a broader view of technology products promising to provide adaptive learning experiences for all students. Instead, the deep conversations around professional learning for teachers left me wondering how I could redefine my role to better support teachers in making learning personal for students.

Personalized Learning Is a Problem of Privilege

Education is a dynamic space, with new trends constantly ebbing and flowing, the pendulum swinging back and forth between truly new innovations and recycled ideas. Experienced educators will recognize these patterns. But for younger teachers like me, whose careers are still in their infancy, it’s not so easy to see through the blinders.

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