Archive for September 2015

How to write letters of recommendation for high-school students

I  hate this time of year.  Week after week, my email is flooded with requests for letters of recommendation.  It’s not my students’ fault.  They only ask because college admissions offices or program directors want them.  Last year, because of one program I introduced students to, I had fifteen recommendations to write within a couple... Read more »

Chicago Public Schools students develop grit through running--but they need help

Senior Maximiliano Gomez joined Hancock College Prep’s cross-country team because, he says, “I wanted to deal with some emotions I was going through.  I felt sports would do the job.”  This Southwest side Chicago Public Schools student didn’t feel like he was cut out for soccer or basketball.  He realized, “Running gave me the confidence... Read more »

What student's suspension over clock reveals about teachers and students

During the middle of the second week of school with my Chicago students, I proudly rattled off the first names of each student in all of my classes.  This week, the third week, I’ll work on their last names.  It takes time to learn over one hundred students’ names and to get to know them... Read more »

When we see ourselves in our students

This post is part of a collaboration with the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards and their blog, The Standard. I admit it: I have favorite students. While I look out for all my students and work to build strong professional relationships around writing with all of them, there are always students I look out... Read more »