I teach Grade 9 to 12 English thematically. If you teach middle years, this isn’t that radical an approach, I know, but it’s different for high school. For over a decade, most English teams I’ve worked with have done this alongside me. It’s a lifesaver for many reasons. Giving each course an overarching theme gives […]
I love the planning part of teaching, taking ideas, and seeing what they might become. It’s one of my favorite things about writing for Moving Writers, because it gives me another outlet for putting those ideas to use. As a planner, I’m constantly noting things that intrigue or interest me, filing them away for future […]
We have officially arrived at the point in the year where panic ensues. The fourth marking period is here and there is still. so. much. to. do. And with the additional pressures of AP and state testing season, to say I’m feeling overwhelmed would be an understatement. The truth is that it’s when the going […]
An exploration of how Twitter can provide quick mini-lessons on writing structure.
In January, during Moving Writers’ series on testing, I wrote about structuring a class when there’s that external test to consider. I really like having a structure. It’s nice to have touchstones and routines to ground things so you can go and explore the things that come up as you go. I’m currently teaching a […]
As the daffodils start sprouting near sidewalks and the draft in my apartment warms to where I don’t feel compelled to don a housecoat at all hours and become more of a Rose Nylund than I already am, the longer, sunshiny, pollen-y days give me the itch to experiment. In the last two weeks, my […]
Writing alongside our students is one of the most important instructional moves we can make – both for our students and for ourselves.
Like most teachers, I’ve had a estranged relationship with the AP exam—and any standardized test. Do we have an obligation to prepare students for the “test”? I think so. But that obligation can never supplant the greater responsibility we bear to build our students’ literacy lives in an increasingly challenging world. Or put another way—do […]
As this post goes live, my Grade 12 students will be finishing their final assessment in their course, a Provincial Assessment. They will have written a process exam for the past four days. Based around a single theme, which they learn on the first day, they were expected to read, respond and write. The first […]
I’d like to formally apologize to my college professors for my “I’m trying to sound smart” papers. I remember cranking out papers in college that, when looking back, make me shudder with embarrassment. How many attempts at “smart sounding” papers did I diligently and dutifully write while holed up in my tiny room in my […]