self reflection

Holiday Break Assumptions

December is stressful for so many reasons.  Seasonal concerts and plays, crafts and the general hustle and bustle around this time of year.  While teachers attempt to make things fun and engaging for the last few weeks before the holiday, there are a few things to consider about assumptions that as educators we might make […]

Shoulders of giants.

There is a wonderful quote from Sir Isaac Newton that goes, “If I have seen further than others, it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants.” To me, this is nothing less than a gigantic nod to everyone who “tried and paved the way” before him, and a reminder of his then obligation to […]

Triggers and Habits in Teaching Part One

Dreaded Seating Arrangements Almost every teacher I talk to says, “I have a really difficult class this year.”  The difficulties identified are most often tied to “behaviour” issues.  In my experience effective classroom “management” can be connected to dynamic programming and developing solid relationships with students. Many of us go to things like Class Dojo […]

Daring Classrooms

I state the obvious when I say that teaching is a demanding job.  If you are reading this, you are most likely a teacher and this is not news to you.  I’d like to highlight a resource that feeds the soul of a teacher (and quite frankly a human being) while also providing some strategies […]

Seedlings, trees, and fallen leaves

It’s Fall. Ugh. As the last leaves drop, it is a good opportunity to share some recent thoughts inspired by the change of seasons beyond the sub-joyous feelings from cold, wet, and grey days. It is a season that offers a lot of natural analogies about education as well. Around my neighbourhood, as in most, […]

Breakout EDU

Breakout EDU is like an Escape Room in a box. The players use teamwork and critical thinking to solve a series of challenging puzzles in order to open a locked box. The first time I experienced Breakout EDU with my students I was not the designer of the game.  Another teacher had designed the Breakouts […]

School year start up

A new school year has begun again and I am once again teaching grade eight, in my opinion, the most exciting and enriching grade I have taught so far. The first few weeks have been incredible because of the honest conversations we had week one about how great their year can be if they make […]

Collaborative Inquiry Celebration

The other day, many teachers from across my school board gathered together to share with other educators how their year long inquiry project went. As I have mentioned in previous posts, mine was about starting our own business as a class and inspiring my students through leadership. I shared with the other educators these successful […]

Teaching in Uncertain Times

When I graduated teacher’s college it was the beginning of the “Harris years”.  Teachers were being declared redundant all over Ontario. I spent three years teaching outside of the province.  Since then I have been through many rounds of collective bargaining-both as a teacher and a local ETFO leader.  I have seen how Ontario’s Provincial […]

Equity and Inclusion for All : Culturally Responsive Teaching and Assessment Pedagogy

The role of culturally responsive teaching is to understand who students are as people and who they are within their community. This pedagogical approach acknowledges, responds to, and celebrates fundamental aspects of student culture while providing equitable and inclusive education for students of all backgrounds and identities. This is especially important for students who identify […]

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