Category: Articles

Guest posts by expert educators

20 Questions We Used to Help Fix Our School

What works when school leaders need to tackle complex challenges? Principal and author Matt Renwick suggests letting go of trying to control outcomes and operating with certainty on “fixing” problems. Pursuing 20 sharply focused questions helped his school gain momentum.

Real or Imagined Lives: Teaching Moon Knight

While comics may not be an immediate go-to for all educators, they are a rich source of adolescent reader engagement. Teachers who are willing to linger with text and images to build conversations will discover their potential for literacy instruction, says Dr. Jason DeHart.

Restoring Momentum After a Turbulent Year

After another school year weighed down by a wide range of challenges, education consultants Ronald Williamson and Barbara R. Blackburn offer school-based leaders a path to restore momentum in their school and revitalize their community’s commitment to a collaborative vision.

Help Students Discover Their Writer’s Mindset

Chris Hall wasn’t satisfied with the way he taught revision in MS writing workshop. After much reflection he’s concluded that the best revision takes place in the mind of the writer during the writing process – not after it’s done. Six mindset ‘stances’ help students learn this skill.

Six Ways to Add Rigor by Deepening Thinking

What does it look like when your students are doing rigorous work and thinking deeply? Dr. Karin Hess discusses how content complexity, cognitive engagement, and the intended scope and depth of a learning activity can work together to scaffold and support deeper thinking.

Teach Design Thinking to Middle Schoolers

Looking for a way to incorporate creativity into your curriculum next school year? You may want to consider teaching students about design thinking. Teacher educator Katie Caprino and her preservice colleague Alyssa Marzili introduce the concepts and highlight 3 useful apps.

Save Teaching Energy: Multitask Mentor Texts

When we transform a text into a multitasking mentor text, we increase the instructional mileage we can get from one power-packed teaching tool, writes veteran teacher and literacy consultant Pam Koutrakos. She includes five “energy star” ideas and a text set to get started.