Classroom Management

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 […]

Lenses

Take a moment to imagine something. Please and thank you. What comes to your mind? Was it difficult to shut out the world for a moment? For me the freedom to take time to imagine something came as a shock to my senses at first. Shouldn’t I be working and not sitting still in my […]

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 […]

Don’t Judge a Teacher By The Bulletin Board

I remember going to the Reading for the Love of It Conference in Toronto for the first time as a fairly new teacher.  I heard Mary Bigler  speak in a motivational keynote address.  She told a story that has stuck through me through the years.  It was about a brand new teacher who was full of […]

Effective Assessment and Feedback: The Single Point Rubric

I’ve never really been focused on grades in my classroom. Some educators and parents might find it shocking to read a teacher put that in print.  However, what I mean is that I seldom talk to my students about levels and letter grades.  I focus discussion around feedback, improvement, exemplars and success criteria.  When rubrics were […]

Before you get hurt…again.

Student: (momentarily non-responsive to verbal interaction) slap, push, slap, hair grab, lunge, slap, yell, cry, run, crouch, cry, calm, apolgize Staff: (1 CYW, 2 SERT) block, block, reassure, block, supportive stance, reassure, block, redirect, clear space, block, reassure, follow, remain calm, reassure, accept The slaps(verbal/physical) are like slabs of concrete that a student piles up when […]

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 […]

Support each other

This is a much needed time for everyone.  The sunlight is increasing. The snow is melting. The temperatures are increasing.  What a time to celebrate? During this much needed break our government has decided to make announcements of change.  This is quite the political tactic.  Distraction from what they want us to know. Politicians have […]

Let’s Talk About Shame

Author Brené Brown from her book “The Gifts of Imperfection” writes that there are three things that people need to understand about shame: 1.  We all have it.  Shame is universal and one of the most primitive human emotions that we experience.  The only people who don’t experience shame lack the capacity for empathy and human […]

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