Differentiated Instruction

Brutalist worksheets

Have you ever seen something that made you wonder whether it’s sole purpose was to make you feel small or insignificant? I don’t mean this in feelgood sort of humbling way like you might ponder a mountain’s majesty or an ocean’s depth. I mean, the way you feel uneasy when looking at a decades old […]

Progressing With Difficulty

As the deadline for completing Progress Reports approaches, I am reflecting on the word “evaluation” and thinking critically about the ways educators and schools “value” knowledge and measure “success”.    Despite the challenges and loss created by COVID-19, my young students continue to demonstrate compassion and resiliency.  They are actively engaged in learning and happy […]

Looking on the bright-side during this dark time.

During this time at home, we are all probably having positive and negative learning moments. From seeing students thrive for the first time to having zero assignments turned in, the highs and lows have been a rollercoaster over the past few months. However, during this time for my sanity, I need to focus on the […]

Overwhelming Resources

As we engage in distance/remote/online/emergency learning Educators are being inundated with resources and tools to use in their virtual classrooms.  It isn’t easy to decide which would be most effective and which ones are safe for teachers and students to use.  There is no one size fits all answer to this but there are a […]

Keeping it fresh.

As of the end of February, it is apparent to no one in Ontario that Spring is just around the corner. Judging by the blankets of snow and recent school bus cancellations, winter continues to disrupt and annoy us with the same creative sadism as a government hell-bent on destroying public education. Despite the stark […]

Class Size Matters: Then and Now

As I look back on my 1973/1974 grade 5 classroom of 29 students, there are significant differences in how we were taught. Teacher Qualifications: Our teacher did not have a university degree and only one year of teachers’ training. (I looked her up). Today’s teachers must complete a 4 year university degree and two years […]

Checklists and Independent Fridays

When I first started teaching grade eight, by Fridays I often found that only a few of my students were handing things in. It was frustrating as many students by the end of the week couldn’t remember what was due or what they had or hadn’t completed. Some actually forgot and some just pretended…it was […]

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 […]

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 […]

Smaller Class Sizes Matter for Kids

As I started researching smaller class sizes, my Google search made it evident that smaller class sizes are significantly better … for students in private schools. Private schools use small class sizes to sell their product. They also get to pick who will be in their classes and who will be in their schools. With […]

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