• work-life
    Best Teaching Practices

    How to Create the Perfect Work-Life Balance as a Teacher

    I know that it has been a few weeks since I have posted on the blog. So, I thought I’d take this opportunity to discuss how teachers can create a perfect work-life balance. There have been a few things happening in my personal life that caused me to step back from the many things I had been trying to accomplish. Honestly, I really only had enough energy to focus at school and home. Everything extra had to take a backseat. As a teacher, self-care is critical. You really cannot be on your game in a classroom of 30 students without making sure you are okay. This is a list of…

  • students
    Best Teaching Practices

    What No One Tells You About Teaching Middle School

    There are many things no one tells you about teaching middle school. Going into teaching (9 years ago) at this point, I am pretty sure I was living in a fantasy world about how I would be the next Erin Gruwell (Freedom Writers), Louanne Johnson (Dangerous Minds), or Jamie Escalante (Stand and Deliver). Well, those notions flitted out as quickly as they came. By the second full year of teaching, I realized this is not the movies. I already knew the pay would be crappy and my resources would be limited because I came from a family of teachers. Both my aunts taught elementary school, and my mother taught elementary…

  • Best Teaching Practices

    5 Easy Steps to More Reflective Teaching

    Reflective teaching is the way to grow and develop as a teacher. Teachers should continually challenge themselves so that they become better. Teaching is one job where this is especially important. Why? Because teaching is about the students and helping them become life-long learners. However, unless you practice this yourself, it is hard to maintain that expectation for your own students. Teaching challenges you in new ways every day and it is critical to keep raising the bar even higher. Learn and grow from your practice and your mistakes. Here are 5 easy steps to becoming a more reflective teacher: 1. Student Feedback I think feedback is always one of…

  • Classroom Management

    How to Manage So Students Will Listen

    Let’s face it, there are a million and one ideas out there on how to create a successful classroom management system. There are many parts to a management system including: rules and procedures [along with the dreaded consequences], desk arrangement, and accessibility to the tools students need to learn. All of these are critical in creating a management system that works. Even with all of these in place, I still found I was struggling to keep students motivated enough to stay on-task while I was teaching. It wasn’t really about student engagement at this point. My lessons were creative, and I felt that I was doing everything I could to…

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