What I’ve Learned My First Year As An Administrator

calendar book with flowers on a desk

I’ve had the privilege of leading professional development workshops/trainings for teachers many times in the past. I’ve been Academic Coordinator at a school in the past and worked with teachers and administrators to create school-wide programs and policies to raise academic achievement. However, this academic year was my first year in an official role as an Vice Principal. I use…

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The Essential Learning Materials Every Classroom Must Have!

Kids actively learning in class

Are you setting up a new classroom, or moving towards hands-on learning instead of traditional, worksheet style of teaching? It can get overwhelming looking at all the different resources out there. So I want to simplify it for you! Here are the must have hands-on learning materials that every Elementary classroom needs. Each of these materials can be used in…

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Alternatives to Professional Development Workshops for Teachers

Teachers and administrators know that life is BUSY during the school year. It can be very difficult to carve out time for a whole staff professional development workshop. So what other alternatives can instructional coaches and administrators use to help their teachers grow? Individual Coaching Cycles During an individual coaching cycle a teacher is paired with a mentor (an administrator,…

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How To Grade Students’ Projects Fairly With Rubrics

water cycle student project

So your students created these beautiful posters, display boards or brochures. Now, you need to give them a grade. How do you make sure you are grading students projects fairly? Often times teachers have their own bias or opinion about what they think is most important on a project. I have found that the fairest, simplest way for teachers to…

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Is This Discipline Or Just Punishment?

It’s impossible to be a teacher or administrator and not have to discipline students. What should discipline look like though? I taught for seven years in Africa. There, it’s still common practice to hit students with a stick when they are misbehaving. Is that discipline? How about having students kneel beside their desk or stand in the back of the…

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Why Is Active Learning So Important?

Active learning is when learners engage in the learning process and with learning materials rather than just sit and take in information. In many modern classrooms active learning is the norm so sometimes we forget how important it is. Here are five reasons active learning is important for your classroom: 1. Active learning creates meaning and connections. Active learning strategies…

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3 Activities to Practice Kindness In the Classroom

heart drawn on a paper

Kindness is a very important concept to teach and practice with your students. Before looking at three great activities to practice kindness, you should discuss what kindness looks and sounds like and why it is actually important. You can use the demonstrations below to help students of any age to visualize kindness in a concrete way. Teach About Why Kindness…

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What is Culturally Responsive Teaching?

Classrooms around the world are becoming more and more diverse. The way in which we connect and present information to students from different backgrounds, cultures and races can effect the way they learn. Nikki Rucker says: “Culturally responsive teaching (CRT) attempts to bridge the gap between teacher and student by helping the teacher understand the cultural nuances that may cause…

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Back to School Series: Building Rapport With Students

Building Rapport With Students

Building relationships with your students and between students is one of the most important things you can you to improve learning and behaviors in your classroom. Research has proven that students need real connections with adults in their life in order to thrive. Here are some ways you can begin building rapport with students this year. Share Things About Your…

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Book Review: “Switch” by Chip and Dan Heath

I was intrigued from cover to cover by Chip and Dan Heath’s book. It is fantastic! The book identifies two parts of every individual. That is the logical, analytical “Rider” and the emotional “Elephant”. You must speak to both parts of the individual if you want to bring change. The Rider brings direction and focus. Without the Rider the Elephant will…

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