A Math Conversation About Grades

Walking slowly through the upper hall – light pouring in through the generous glass – dust dancing with invisible currents, a truly bright and serene moment interrupted by a group of thirty or so smiles and stories walking towards me. I’m thinking it’s a class on their way to the library. No problem – I […]

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What are schools for?

Training? Preparation? Umm, learning? Learning, in my experience, is rarely discussed in schools. If brought up in conversation it is almost immediately morphed into “student achievement” or some other term that dodges a close and sincere examination of what constitutes learning. Learning is a process – not a thing. It is fluid and nonlinear – […]

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Purpose of Teacher Evaluation?

This post is inspired by a training workshop designed to introduce folks to a new teacher evaluation rubric. In this training we were asked to write words that represent the purpose of teacher evaluation onto sticky notes to discuss and use to create a statement describing the purpose of teacher evaluation. Many notes were created […]

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Mo’ Better Teacher Evaluation

Since we can’t seem to get away from formally evaluating teachers – here are some thoughts on improving the process: Teacher evaluation and professional growth is an essential factor in the health and culture of a school and its collective of learners. As such it must be a clear and understandable part of every teacher’s […]

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Words and Things (and Assumptions)

An excerpt from the book “And What Do YOU Mean by Learning?” by Seymour Sarason: Two people may say they are patriotic [or any other concept] only to find that when they pursue what they mean – what the concept includes or excludes, what actions it supports or indicts  – they come to a parting of ways. […]

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The Mathematics of Gratitude

I’m fortunate to work closely with two math teachers smart enough to realize that math is Beautiful, Everywhere, and Typically taught in a way that hides its beauty and its universal value. The three of us work with several other teachers in an interdisciplinary learning environment that, by design, forces teachers and students to often […]

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Kids Aren’t Bumpers

Kids aren’t bumpers, they’re human beings! My colleague yelled this in a crowded auditorium filled with teachers and administrators. We were all there for a staff meeting. It’s been a few years since this happened… and I think about it from time to time. I usually remember it when I think about the universal nature […]

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Toil and Trouble

A snapshot of Mosaic as we continue to develop and grow – both as a program and as a rag-tag collective of ambitious teachers and students: We all work hard in Mosaic … and for that I and others are extremely grateful and appreciative. Though some of us can be abrasive and harsh at times, […]

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The Day The Bells Stopped

September 28, 2015: One year, one month, twenty one days, three hours, and twenty minutes after the launch of our Mosaic program. It was a Monday. And it was the day and date of one of the most profound moments of my career as an educator. For on this day, at approximately 11:00am MST, the bells […]

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