“You are permitted to bring one 5×7 inch note card to the exam, with any notes on it that you want.” My eleventh grade American History teacher was explaining the rules for the semester exam. “The exam will consist of … Continue reading Cheating
For years, we’ve been struggling with the idea of grades. If a student gets a “B” in seventh grade science, what does that mean? When I was teaching (back in the dark ages) most teachers used a point system. Bringing … Continue reading Grading and Attendance
As I was writing the first part of this, I got to the section on keeping instruction brief and realized I wasn’t doing a very good job of that. So we took a little break. We were talking about how … Continue reading How to Teach Online, Part 2
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what fall looks like. When we started this adventure six weeks ago, we told ourselves that it was temporary. We’re going to stay home for a couple weeks. That might drag into a … Continue reading Next Steps
There was a social studies test coming up in seventh grade. Jimmy is a conscientious student. He works hard, tries to please his parents and his teachers, and is helpful to others. Jimmy is a 21st century kid. He uses … Continue reading 21st Century Cheating
Would you ride in a driverless car? Let’s say you’re in Pittsburgh or Phoenix and you call for an Uber. The car rolls up, and there’s no one inside. Do you get in? Your answer might depend on how the … Continue reading Different Enough
A couple months ago, I surveyed the teachers in my district about classroom technology. Over the last few years, we have focused a lot on improving student access to technology. While this has meant unprecedented growth in tech resources available … Continue reading Do We Need Teachers?
I’m a believer in personal learning networks. I’ve often said that I have learned far more from my colleagues than I have from any graduate course or workshop or conference. I’ve connected with people from all over the world, exchanging … Continue reading Are We There Yet?
I was in the superintendent’s office last week refining a plan for technology and media in our schools. We had a complicated diagram with circles and arrows and boxes all over it. It started with the district’s strategic vision, and specifically … Continue reading Why?
You didn’t go to Grandma’s house without eating. There were always baked goods: cookies, coffee cake, donuts. As soon as you sat down, she’d put on a fresh pot of coffee and start cooking. What can I make you? Want … Continue reading Feed the Hungry
The teaching profession is under attack. The disgruntled parent is gossiping at the coffee house about some injustice done in the classroom. The taxpayer complains that the kids these days aren’t learning anything. Business leaders want to come in and … Continue reading 5 Things Teachers Can Do to Save Their Profession
About a year ago, I started carrying around an old-fashioned paper notebook. Whenever the mood strikes me, I jot down notes and ideas in it. They’re generally not very well reasoned. Sometimes, they’re little diagrams or lists or mind maps. … Continue reading Best Bits from the Notebook