Real Advice for Real Teachers in Our Toughest Schools
Wednesday April 23rd 2014
The Importance of Portfolios at Year’s End

The Importance of Portfolios at Year’s End

One of the things that kill me about the end of each school year is on the last day when the kids say, “Well, now that I’ve finished Spanish II I never have to speak Spanish again.” Or when they take everything in their binder, and sometimes [...]

One From the Vault: STAR Testing: The Farce Begins Anew

One From the Vault: STAR Testing: The Farce Begins Anew

With STAR testing going on this month across the nation, I thought I'd bring back last year's post about the insanity of high stakes testing, and how in fact, there is nothing at stake for the students taking the tests.Today teachers in my [...]

Suzy Lee Weiss and White People Problems

Suzy Lee Weiss and White People Problems

This week in the news a high school senior named Suzy Lee Weiss wrote a piece in the Wall Street Journal satirizing the college admissions process of Ivy League colleges. She was upset that Harvard, Yale, and Princeton rejected her application and [...]

Teaching for Real: The Book

Teaching for Real: The Book

Some of you may have noticed the volume of my blog postings has fallen off dramatically in the last few months. There is a very good reason for this. Part of it is the two-year old at home, part of it is that I am a full time teacher, and the last [...]

The Beauty of Service Learning: What Are You Doing?

The Beauty of Service Learning: What Are You Doing?

One of the new buzz terms, especially in the emerging world of charter schools, is the idea of Service Learning Projects. SLPs are generally projects undertaken by students where they identify a need in the community and address it through community [...]

Curriculum Upload: Teaching Fahrenheit 451 in the Urban Classroom

Curriculum Upload: Teaching Fahrenheit 451 in the Urban Classroom

One of my favorite books to teach is Fahrenheit 451 by the late Ray Bradbury. Not only has it withstood the test of time, I feel that with each new evolution in social media, and with each new advancement in how we consume media using technology, [...]

New Year’s Resolution: Start Beef With PhDs

One of the cool things about being a teacher who has been around for awhile is just before Winter Break, all your former students who are now in college stop by and pay you a visit. It is always amazing how grown up they seem and they strut in with [...]

A Teacher’s Thoughts on Connecticut

A Teacher’s Thoughts on Connecticut

I’ve given myself some time to sit and let it all sink in. This is hard to do when every channel, every person, every waking moment seems to be inundated with close-up coverage of the Connecticut tragedy. They want every angle, they want every [...]

Powerball Parent Outreach

Powerball Parent Outreach

Everyone involved in education, myself included, constantly harps on the importance of reaching out to parents, and how education is in their hands more so than even our schools. We talk and talk about needing better parent outreach, we imagine a [...]

A Non-Finnomenon: A Real Teacher’s Review of The Finland Phenomenon

A Non-Finnomenon: A Real Teacher’s Review of The Finland Phenomenon

I finally got around to watching The Finland Phenomenon, the documentary by Tony Wagner, an Innovation Education Fellow at Harvard University, about the cold Scandinavian country that has blown away worldwide education with a snowstorm of success. [...]

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Guest Articles

The Conditioning of Urban Teenagers

The Conditioning of Urban Teenagers

Here is a great article from Rockman, a social worker/blogger who works in an inner-city high school in Brooklyn. Even though we're on opposite coasts, we all face the same problems, and so do our youth. If you get a chance, check out his blog at: http://realteenissues.com/If teenagers can be conditioned to believe that “getting [...]

Education is Personal, Not Corporate

With the school year rapidly approaching, we've decided to highlight some other voices around the educational world. Here are some great thoughts from teacher extraordinaire Kimberely Gilles.Education is Personal, Not CorporateOkay, here’s my truth.  Everything about education is personal.  And that is exactly what the national [...]

An Interview with Editor-In-Chief of Red Ochre Lit, Mimi Ferebee, on Matt’s New Novel “The Darkness Inside Me is Sparkling”

An Interview with Editor-In-Chief of Red Ochre Lit, Mimi Ferebee, on Matt’s New Novel “The Darkness Inside Me is Sparkling”

***Interview with The Darkness Inside Me is Sparkling author Mateo Amaral***from the December Issue of Red Ochre Lit: A JournalMimi Ferebee: Mateo I am thrilled to have you as our interviewee this month. It’s been a pleasure getting to know you this year and I am happy to present you to RED OCHRE’s readership. First, I think we [...]