I have thought for a long time about starting my own blog, but I’ve always been torn between writing about education policy and reform, effective classroom strategies, or writing a teacher’s blog akin to A Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, minus the Stalinist Soviet labor camps (although if you are a teacher, you might still find an interesting comparison). Of course, once I’ve decided on one, something occurs and I think maybe I’ll write about the other. Well, I’ve finally grabbed my spoon (for those of you who have read A Day) and decided to write about all of it! So, without further ado–

Policy and Advocacy features posts about education policy, education reform, and teacher and student advocacy. I believe classroom teachers are the most powerful resource in creating lasting education reform measures that will reap benefits for the millions of children caught in a political system that seemingly forgets their humanity and sacrifices them on the altar of standardized testing. These posts encourage teachers and communities to raise their collective voices against education policies that ignore the underlying social causes for the crisis in education today and instead impose rigid test scores as indicators of student learning and teacher effectiveness, thereby perpetuating the problem by undermining authentic learning and disregarding individual student progress and growth as an indicator of that learning.

Classroom Practices describe best teaching practices based on research and my own experiences. As educators, we must all seek opportunities to practice, refine, and perfect our craft. Some posts provide instructional techniques, some provide lesson plans and ideas, and others provide invaluable resources I’ve discovered in my own quest to be a better teacher.

A Break Between Bells narrates the often strange but true stories from the classroom. Ranging from the greatest joys when a student learns something new to the hearty laughs (and tears) that have resulted from my own journey in learning and teaching, these posts seek to unite, inspire, humor, comfort, and sympathize with those who have a vested interest in our children, whether that is teachers, principals, counselors, parents, aunts and uncles, grandparents, or the old man sitting on his porch yelling at kids to stay off his lawn.

May you find courage and strength in the journey.