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Dear November 23rd,
Thank you for being a good day. We spent our time together by sleeping in to 8am. I spent much of you either listening to music, reading Zoo City by Lauren Beukes or spending time with my wife. I ended you by going to see my friend play with Kris Orlowski in a concert down in Seattle. Of course, I returned to my car to find a smashed window and you were about over by the time the cops showed up to take a report.
But I don't blame you for that. It was hardly your fault. Still, I am very conflicted about you. See, because of you I heard a few people...
So here’s the deal… I’m a fat guy. I’ve always struggled with my weight. As an adult, I’ve been as heavy as 415 pounds and as fit as 235. I’m pretty tall, too (6’3”), so I can often carry a lot of extra weight before I start getting concerned. I’m in one of those rough times right now. At 320 pounds, I know I need to lose weight.
My problem is this: I want my weight loss and my weight management to be easy. I want to be really good about Weight Watchers, or Atkins, or South Beach for a year or so. I want to drop all of the extra weight in that time. Then, I want to be done. I want to not have to think about eating differently anymore. I want to go back to living my life “normally.”
Unfortunately, living my life “normally” is what...
In a recent New Yorker article, noted surgeon and author Atul Gawande makes an interesting observation: Professional athletes – who are already at the top of their game – almost ALWAYS hire a coach to guide their continued growth yet successful professionals in fields like medicine and education somehow believe that “being coached” is beneath them.
This dichotomy stood out starkly to Gawande after squeezing in a tennis lesson with a 20-something tennis pro who helped him to improve his already impressive serve – Gawande was once a highly ranked high school tennis star in Ohio – in just one lesson.
I have been teaching long enough now that I have the pleasure of watching some of my former students become my colleagues. One of them is Maxwell, a young man now in his early thirties whom I have known since he was a ninth grader. Thoughtful, respectful, and intelligent, Maxwell has always leaned toward public service. He was raised in a foster home by a loving, elderly couple, and after their deaths, helped to raise his two younger sisters. After graduating from college with honors, he served two tours in Iraq; then the married father of two boys decided he wanted to be a teacher and a role model to other Black young men.
Max has taught history at several high schools, and is highly respected by co-workers and students. For those...
I wanted to share a guest post I did for the online discussion portion of Learning Matters, John Merrow’s education show. I wanted to write, “I am thankful to you for standing up for teachers for 30 years.” I knew that wasn’t what he wanted when he asked,
“What about the current state of education are you most thankful for?”
I am most thankful for increased focus on accomplished teaching in...
By Kristoffer Kohl
Kristoffer Kohl is a former classroom teacher working currently as a policy associate at CTQ to further the vision of TEACHING 2030. He previously collaborated with a team of accomplished teachers to produce the report “Transforming School Conditions: Building Bridges to the Education System that Students and Teachers Deserve.”
During recent visits to a few schools known for their innovative practices, I was struck by one...
One of the comfortable traditions that I've gotten into over the last few years is spending time over the Thanksgiving break thinking about the people in my PLN who have changed who I am as a professional.
And no joke: I'm thankful for a TON of people.
Thanks to my buddy Mike Hutchinson, I stumbled across an interesting new tool the other day called Tripline, which allows users to create sweet little photo-enhanced interactive map-based presentations.
As the Tripline guys explain, the possibilities of sharing and learning through locations are almost endless:
At its most basic level, Tripline is a way for you communicate by putting places on a map. That's a very human activity that has been happening for thousands of years.
We've added a social layer to that communication...
If throughout last Friday you heard guttural screams in the distance, it was probably one of the thousands of National Board Certification applicants attempting unsuccessfully to learn their scores online. Pearson’s servers crashed, making breathless teachers wait an extra 48 hours to discover if they had achieved.
I made it! I’m a National Board Certified teacher. After the initial shouting-at-the-computer euphoria wore off, I immediately started thinking about how I could help other teachers find out about and navigate the journey of National Board Certification. A tiny first step one is to continue to nag every educator I know to see Mitchell 20, a great movie about how the National...
In one of the more surprising decisions that a public school district has made in recent memory, the Jefferson County Public Schools in Colorado has started selling advertising space on student report cards.
For $90,000, Colorado's nonprofit education savings plan has bought the right to slap a big, fat advertisement on the bottom of every student report card for the next three years.
In a district with 86,000 students who...