A veteran teacher turned coach shadows 2 students for 2 days – a sobering lesson learned

Granted, and...

The following account comes from a veteran HS teacher who just became a Coach in her building. Because her experience is so vivid and sobering I have kept her identity anonymous. But nothing she describes is any different than my own experience in sitting in HS classes for long periods of time. And this report of course accords fully with the results of our student surveys. 

I have made a terrible mistake.

I waited fourteen years to do something that I should have done my first year of teaching: shadow a student for a day. It was so eye-opening that I wish I could go back to every class of students I ever had right now and change a minimum of ten things – the layout, the lesson plan, the checks for understanding. Most of it!

This is the first year I am working in a school but not teaching…

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Putting Exceptional back in America: It’s What Great Schools Do

written by H. Michael Hartoonian

America is an exceptional place. It is exceptional not because of its landscape, the people, or its wealth, but simply because it is an idea. It is an idea sustained through engaged debate by citizens who understand reciprocal duty and who judge others by their morals and manners. It is exceptional because America (can) show the world that it is possible for a people to live as citizens rather than as isolated subjects, and as civil and civic stewards of that idea. Mostly, it is exceptional because the idea demands a deep respect for learning, hard work, thoroughness, patience, honesty, and justice.

America must have little to do with domestic and foreign policies that diminish its moral authority. Hubris, unethical private and public behavior, and distain for learning all destroy the idea – an idea to which so many have given full measure of devotion. This democratic republic needs champions who understand these things. Democracy, indeed, depends on elites to keep the debate dynamic and true. Cultures create elites or professions to protect the culture. The four classical professions are medicine, law, theology, and education. Let us here address the educator as protector or steward of the idea we call the United States of America. Continue reading