Edtech in the Gradeless Classroom: Google Keep

"To one with a hammer, everything looks like a nail." This adage reveals the power tools have to shape our perceptions. What does this mean for the tools we use in the classroom? If using a hammer pushes me to see nails wherever I look, how is the grade book software on my computer influencing … Continue reading Edtech in the Gradeless Classroom: Google Keep

Going Gradeless and Special Education

Grading and reporting have been hot topics in education in recent years, spawning a move to grading practices that are grounded in standards, competencies, or proficiency, depending on the language of the state. The idea has been if we ensure that our grades are based on clear standards, then the meaning of the grade is … Continue reading Going Gradeless and Special Education

From Hostility to Community

In our dream we have limitless resources, and the people yield themselves with perfect docility to our molding hand. The present educational conventions fade from our minds; and, unhampered by tradition, we work our own good will upon a grateful and responsive rural folk. We shall not try to make these people or any of … Continue reading From Hostility to Community

Now’s the Time to Cultivate Culture

Culture, like the air we breathe, is all around us. As social beings who live in community, we exist simultaneously in a variety of cultural contexts that have a profound impact on the kinds of interactions we have and the decisions we make. Culture shapes our relationships and establishes the frontiers that define our communities. … Continue reading Now’s the Time to Cultivate Culture

Communities Without Limits

I understand some of what people are talking about when they refer to feeling alone in a community of teachers. Whenever we swim against the intellectual current, we get resistance. Some of this resistance comes from the context (like the current) we are in. It pushes and pulls us in certain directions. Some of the … Continue reading Communities Without Limits

Now’s the Time to Save the Humanities

Does it seem to anyone else that the humanities have lost their roots? Or that humanities has taken on a “school” definition that deviates greatly from its original intent: the study of the human experience. Humanities originally blended an exploration of art, culture, literature, music, history, philosophy, religions (and more) to uncover what it is … Continue reading Now’s the Time to Save the Humanities

School Without Scoreboards

Sports as Metaphor Formative assessment and standards-based learning enthusiasts often seize on the metaphor of coaching to describe a better approach to feedback, assessment, and grading. I myself have employed this metaphor many times. Here’s a post I wrote a few months ago: This feedback cycle is not unlike the process used by coaches to prepare players for an upcoming … Continue reading School Without Scoreboards