Archive for September 2013

Why we must accept Common Core writing standards

As an English teacher who holds a master’s degree in writing, I’m grateful and inspired by the Common Core’s focus on writing skills.  The Common Core standards, as you likely know, “reflect the knowledge and skills that our young people need for success in college and careers’ in the 21st century.  Critics dismiss Common Core... Read more »

How to measure success

My students are sometimes surprised when they hear it took my five years to get through undergrad. “Aren’t you supposed to graduate in four?” they’ll ask.  I actually almost dropped out at the end of my second year. My parents always emphasized education and celebrated my academic success. But when my sister was diagnosed with... Read more »

When Chicago Public Schools students prove a teacher wrong

When Chicago Public Schools students prove a teacher wrong
The goal of every good teacher is to help students be independent thinkers who question ideas and authority figures.  And I’ve learned to accept when my students tell me that . . . well . . . I’m . . . uh . . . wrong. A couple of weeks ago, I walked my high-school... Read more »

Why I discourage Latino students from becoming teachers

As I enter my 18th year in education, I’m reminded of how much things change and how much they stay the same. About ten years ago, a casual conversation with a student started with me asking, “What are you doing after high school?” The student, usually male, responded, “Going to the Army.” “Why do you... Read more »