Showing posts from October, 2015

Find Your Tribe

What does it mean to find your tribe? To me, it means finding like-minded people to walk along with on a journey. In my work life, I am so happy that I have found people that are passionate educators that care about kids and being the best teacher they can be. By connecting with these people in real life, at school, or online via blogs and Twitter, I feel supported and also motivated to continue working hard.

Being a teacher can be difficult. There is too much to do, too little time, too many mandates, too little support, etc, etc. When I'm feeling overwhelmed by the demands of teaching, I can turn to my tribe for inspiration and support. When I stumped how to reach a kid, teach a lesson, make my class engaging, or how to help a colleague, I turn to my tribe. Reading one of my favorite blogs, connecting on Twitter, or stopping by a trusted teacher's classroom for a quick chat is sometimes all I need to get reenergized in this crazy career.

I've even renamed my blog roll o…

Sharing a Twitter Feed with Students

I previously blogged about how I created a Google Form with character limits to collect "tweets" from my students. I then read and curate the responses and copy/paste tweets into the actual account, @6Amath.

The next thing I wanted to do, was create a way for my sixth grade students to see what is being tweeted. The age of my students presents a challenge because technically they can't create a Twitter account because they are under the age of 13. To overcome this problem, I started thinking about my own blog and how I have a Twitter feed on the side showing my own tweets. I thought, "what if I create a new blog and embed the Twitter feed for the class Twitter account?!

So, I did just that. I created a blog to share the Twitter feed. Now, I just share this link with my students and they can see (updated in real time) their own tweets and tweets of classmates!

I learned how to add a Twitter feed in Blogger by following this tutorial from "The Learning Coach&quo…

Things I've Stopped Doing

After reading Cult of Pedagogy's blog post about teaching practices she is "kicking to the curb," I was inspired to write a post in the same style and address practices that I don't do anymore.

Putting a Grade at the Top of the Paper

In the past, I might spend hours grading a test, giving comments in the margin, and then carefully counting up correct answers and putting a grade at the top of the paper. If I was feeling extra nice, I might even put a sticker. Then, when I passed back the papers, I would be so annoyed that students just looked at the grade, ripped the sticker off, and I found most tests in the recycling bin at the end of class. Even my attempts to get students to save the tests in their "portfolio" were lacking in authenticity, because I knew students had only looked at the "grade" and not what they had gotten wrong or any of my comments.

Two years ago, I started grading using a color coding system and NO GRADE. Whoa, what a differe…