voice

I’m a science teacher.  I didn’t immediately embrace this identity, as I began my career a passionate English teacher.  It didn’t take long before I was bouncing back and forth between English and science classrooms, and I quickly grew to love both equally.  Today, I primarily teach science, but I have not left my English background behind.  As a Teacher Consultant of the National Writing Project...
Starting something new is perpetually a complex endeavor: exciting and challenging; confusing and frustrating; fun and eye-opening; and important and mysterious --- think first day as a freshman, think mid-week of the first week of the Summer Institute (as part of the National Writing Project), think first day on the job. Being a member of this team of teachers (see links, below) working on...
Sometimes innovation is about having a sense of the big idea, then paving the way one step at a time. Creativity and exploration certainly is part of the learning process. As an engaged digital literacy educator, I invite my students into powerful opportunities to engage in conversation with other learners across the country through the Youth Voices Community. Through this professional learning...
This post was written by all the teacher-leaders in Sandboxes for Learning who attended the meeting described below December 9-11, 2016: Paul Allison, Christina Cantrill, Joe Dillion, Jenny Lockie, Jo Paraiso, Dawn Reed, Shantanu Saha, Chris Sloan, and Trixie Smith. Designing curriculum for engaging learning opportunities always requires careful thought and planning. The second weekend in...
One of my goals this year is to provide writing experiences that encourage young people to identify as writers and thinkers. My own school writing experiences (many of which were unmemorable), my opportunities to write in non-traditional ways (thank you Mr. Gross and Susan Lytle,) and knowledge I gained from my spouse via her time working with Pat Hoy in the Expository Writing Program at NYU, all...
A former student of mine, now in education herself, posed this question on Facebook: "Teacher friends, tomorrow is the day before a vacation [Thanksgiving]. How are you addressing the [Ferguson] grand jury announcement." Still from Carlos' upcoming video My response is longer than seemed appropriate for a Facebook comment box, so here goes...First of all, I'll reframe the question: how have I...
I could've rapped about my hard times on this song But heaven knows I would a been wrong I wouldn't a been right, it wouldn't a been love It wouldn't a been life, it wouldn't a been us This can't be life -from Scarface on “This Can’t Be Life.” [explicit lyrics on this link] This week I had planned to continue to write about building community relationships as part of everyday educational...
Last week on TTT, a group of us got together to talk about intergenerational MOOC participation and what might happen if there were a cMOOC focused on the idea of Genius Hour. Here's the video:       Toward the end of the session, Peggy George asked "What's your 'purpose' for offering it and what would be the kids' purpose in wanting to be part of it?"   Great questions so I'm answering them...
Keywords: poetry, remix, podcast, voice
My good friend, Terry Elliott, released a poem into the wild the other day, and he asked that we remix it. I am not one to pass up a remix invite, and so I requested that he podcast his poem and share the file with me. What he didn’t know was that I was recrafting his words as a poem for two voices. In Audacity, I cut up his audio file, adding my own, and used sounds from his farm and from my...
GERMANTOWN ACADEMY MS “TECHNOMANCERS” AT BACK TO SCHOOL NIGHT "Technomancer" is a term a number of my students adopted during their 6th grade year that combines "technology" and "necromancer" and reflects their comfort with and ability to manipulate technology and apply it in new, transformative ways in education. It is a fitting term for the new student technology group that was assembled in...

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