Lift UP Your Teachers

Being in the business of supporting early career teachers is like telling someone they will have to climb a mountain blindfolded in the winter with no shoes and unsure footing. It is a tough career. At this present moment, Chicago public school teachers are on strike. In 2018, Los Angeles, Colorado, Arizona, Oklahoma, Virginia, and West Virginia went on strike. Each strike followed the same line of needs: teacher raises, smaller class sizes, and addition of mental health, social, and special education professionals. When I first began teaching, in 1981, I knew I was in it for life. My colleagues went on strike, that year. Guess what they wanted? A raise in pay, smaller class sizes, and addi

What are you doing to take care of you?

Let's start a conversation. SELF CARE Conferences, marking periods, endless lesson plans, parent interactions, and getting your laundry done..... How do you manage? Please share with us how you take care of YOU, when you feeling overwhelmed.

Somebody's Watching You

Someone is watching you. Ever had that feeling? You look around, right and left, up and down. With no results...still that feeling. Teachers of all ages need to be aware. You will be watched and surveilled undercover. Before you start learning spy moves to shake your tail (see what I did there?) let me explain. Students of all ages are the perfect undercover eyes. They will watch what a teacher wears, how they put an outfit together, whether they tend to be a slob, or worse. I recall a time when I had a group in a circle and a girl said to me during transition: “Do you know you have one brown shoe on one foot and one black shoe on the other?” I laughed it off as I had the same style shoe but

Disconnect for Better Connection

Connectedness. This is essential to living a good life. Then again, so is solitary time. How to balance? A very thoughtful man I know told me that there would be times that I would crave some alone time and there will be time when I will not. So much can be accomplished by a quiet sit. Before your day begins is the best time to give yourself an uninterrupted ten minutes. Don’t give me that “I haven’t got any time” excuse. Trust me. Getting up ten minutes earlier or shifting some prep to the evening so to easily open up this span of time the next day is important. What to do? This is going to sound lame. Get your coffee, tea, or morning drink. Sit in your comfortable chair. You can look out t

Wormy Days

Today is a wormy sort of day. At least that is what I would have discussed with my students when they arrived in the morning. Wormy days are wet, filled with periods of rain, and ultimately provide no chance for the kids to go out for recess. A teacher’s nightmare. In my school, indoor recess means the students would bring rainy day coloring, math problems, board games, or cards to the lunchroom where the frazzled Para pros would keep a lid on the chaos. The kids would return much the same way they left: Needing to unfidget. In the Elementary setting, this type of day requires some careful alternative planning. Kids need to move. A quick search in google provides many videos that can be book

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