Archive for education SmartBlogs

During a recent parent-teacher conference for my fourth-grader, the teacher said she had been differentiating instruction for my child. I wasn’t sure exactly what she meant by differentiation. I assumed she was doing this for every student in the class and not just my child. I wondered how and what she was differentiating and what types of assessments she was using to help her differentiate.[…] Continue Reading »

We teachers are very tempted to employ the “back in my day, we did things differently” tactic with our students. Student zoning out in class? Tough, because back in my day you either paid attention or you missed out. Didn’t know what the homework was? Too bad, because back in my day you picked up the phone and called someone to find out.[…] Continue Reading »

Blended learning is transforming roles of teachers and students in many classrooms and has become a trendy buzzword in education in recent years. Yet, for all its trendiness and efficacy, the true meaning of what blended learning means has somehow gotten lost in all the buzz. This has become a term that has many meanings to many different stakeholders.[…] Continue Reading »

“The truth knocks on your door and you say, ‘Go away, I am looking for the truth,’ and it goes away.” — Robert Pirsig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

This quote has always been a reminder to me to open my heart and mind to the people and situations I encounter as an educator. I needed this reminder because the pressure to implement a new policy, program or initiative often filtered or blocked what I needed to see right in front of me: Human beings engaged with other human beings trying to do their best.[…] Continue Reading »

I do not enjoy being the plagiarism police with my middle-school students. For me, detecting plagiarism and determining consequences take more energy than proactively planning assignments that don’t lend themselves to copying.

Here are some steps I take — and recommend trying — to prevent plagiarism before it begins. These may not make the assignment plagiarism proof, but they will certainly make it more difficult to plagiarize.[…] Continue Reading »