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
Years ago, I asked one of my high school teachers if he would consider teaching a course online. “Why would I want to do that?” he asked. “I come to work because I love being around kids. Online classes would … Continue reading How to Teach Online, Part 1
What an unsettling time. In a couple weeks, our world has dramatically shifted. It’s like 9/11. It’s like JFK. It’s not, really. Those were sudden national tragedies when the world changed in an instant. This is slower. Our world changed … Continue reading The Opportunity of Crisis
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
As the father of a high school senior, I’ve spent some time on college campuses over the last several months. We’ve visited elite private schools, small liberal arts colleges, and large state institutions. We’ve talked to admissions counselors, students, professors, … Continue reading College Ready
I was talking to a colleague from a nearby school district the other day. She had just come from a training session on a new math program they’re going to be using. From what I understand, it’s mostly a test-prep … Continue reading Leading the Blind
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?
Shortly after school ended in June, the custodial staff descended on the high school media center. They removed all of the books and bookshelves. This move had been coming for a while. Book circulation has been remarkably low for years. … Continue reading Sans Livres
“The purpose of teaching a child is to enable the child to get along without the teacher.” In elementary school, we have a lot of structure. We line up a lot. We go to the restroom and to art and … Continue reading Fostering Independence
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?
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