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Issues that Impact Student Learning

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Schools face challenges on a daily basis that negatively impacts student learning. Administrators and teachers work hard to overcome these challenges, but it is often an uphill climb.

Improving Student Learning
Teaching Spotlight10

Classroom Assessment Best Practices & Applications

Sunday April 20, 2014

I admit it! I hate to grade papers! I would bet that I am not alone. Most teachers loathe this necessary, but time consuming part of being a teacher. The truth is that grading papers is only one part of classroom assessment. Classroom assessment is data management. It is about compiling all the available data across multiple sources and using it to create a specific instructional plan for the whole group, as well as each individual student. It is about setting goals, providing students with immediate and continuous feedback, and reevaluating where your students are at any given point in the school year. As a teacher if you are not utilizing all the available data to drive your instruction, you are short changing yourself and your students.

How do you use data? What does assessment look like in your classroom? How do you manage the time necessary to properly utilize classroom assessment?

March Teaching Vocabulary Terms

Monday March 31, 2014

I have added five new terms to the teaching glossary for the month of March. This glossary is intended to add a level of depth and understanding to the published content on this site.

The Common Core State Standards May Be in Trouble

Sunday March 30, 2014

Trouble is a brewing! With just a few months remaining until forty-five states were scheduled to fully implement the Common Core State Standards, we are starting to see resistance from parents and politicians. Many educators who have spent hundreds of hours planning and getting ready for the Common Core have mixed feelings. On one hand, there are aspects of the standards that many have never agreed with, but on the other hand there has been too large of an investment in time and money for politicians to finally decide on the eve of implementation that they made a mistake. This discussion and the decisions that follow should have been made 2-3 years ago. However, if you follow politics on a regular basis you understand that procrastination is king and decisions are often hastily made only to revisit them at a later time to fix any major issues that occur. Regardless of the outcome, the next few weeks will be interesting as many states could follow Indiana and repeal the Common Core State Standards choosing instead to go a different direction.

What are your thoughts on the Common Core State Standards? Should legislators repeal them this late into the game? How do you think this will impact public education in the United States as a whole?

20 Life Lessons Taught at School

Sunday March 23, 2014
School provides one gigantic social experiment. It creates a melting pot of different personalities, cultures, socioeconomic backgrounds, interests, etc. Children are sent to school to learn core academic curricula including reading, math, English, writing, science, and social studies. However, learning at school is not just limited to those things. Children also learn life lessons both directly and indirectly. Teachers often incorporate critical aspects of life in their daily lessons. Many students require lessons in life skills as much as they do the academic skills. The best teachers are able to challenge a student's thinking in both areas in route to making them a better person.

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