Deep Passion.Great Teaching. IGNITED

Breaking the Pedagogy of Poverty Cycle

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 I have always taught in low income or as some would call them high poverty schools. Over the course of 17 years my view of my role at these schools has drastically changed . When I finally moved up to a high stakes testing grade level I used to love being the underdog and then coming out on top. Then all of a sudden at the beginning of the 2008 … Read More →

Anchor Charts: You Can Have Too Much of a Good Thing

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 Anchor charts are the new mandate for educators across the country. Like with most education mandates the implementation can be compared to a California wildfire. Simply put, out of control!  What are the Benefits of Anchor Charts? According to Expeditionary Learning, anchor charts: build a culture of literacy in the classroom,  as teachers and students make thinking visible by recording content, strategies, processes, cues, and guidelines during the learning process. anchor … Read More →

5 Ugly Truths About Workstations in the Urban Classroom

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Small group instruction is great, workstations not so much! Every week I am in awe of how many administrators and support personnel offer workstations as a solution for students who struggle with certain concepts. I have learned that silence is golden whenever I am offered workstations as a solution to any of my teaching problems. Here are 5 ugly truths that you should know about workstations before you implement them … Read More →

Response to Intervention- Data Tracking Done Right!

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I hear administrators tell teachers that they should be using data to drive their instruction. I’m not sure if they understand that teachers have to be taught to track and use data. It just doesn’t happen by osmosis. I didn’t realize it until recently that analyzing and interpreting data is not easy for a whole lot of teachers. Data Tracking There are many different data sources of that you can track. … Read More →

Converting Improper Fractions: The Zebra Cake Challenge!

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  As I slowly walked down the hallway to my classroom I told myself, “Last school year was a complete disaster but this year is going to be different!” If I could paint a picture of the students that I had last year, it would look like a scene from Major Payne. Every morning when I entered the building I felt like I was entering boot camp and I was … Read More →

Classroom Management: Intentionally Building Relationships

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Merriam Webster defines a relationship as the way in which two or more people, groups, countries, etc., talk to, behave toward, and deal with each other. So, when 2 people are interested in the possibility of entering into a relationship with one another, they ask questions and behave in a manner that will hopefully yield a healthy relationship. All relationships whether they be friendship, professional, or a romantic relationships require every action to … Read More →

Academic Language: Speaking the Language of Your Discipline

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Last week I had the pleasure of presenting at the Region 11 Conference in Whitesettlement, TX. The title of my presentation was Moving Beyond Misconceptions with Composing and Decomposing Fractions. Even though this was my first time presenting on this topic I thought that this particular session could provide teachers with another tool for their math instruction. I was amazed at the depth of discussions that took place during my … Read More →

How to Solve Your Biggest Problems with Teaching Summary

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  Believe it or not I can actually teach reading! I just prefer to teach math or science because they challeng e me in ways that I can’t explain. That doesn’t mean that I have abandoned reading because if you have read any of my math  blog posts you will find that I use different reading strategies to teach problem solving. Most of you all probably don’t know that I moderate … Read More →

Personalized Professional Development: Out with the Old in with the New!

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My school year has ended and I look forward to the summertime not only because school has ended but because I am able to reflect on the past school year and create goals to improve my instruction for the next school year. I thought that this was the norm for most teachers but when I became a Master Teacher I realized that many teachers are turned off when they hear … Read More →

STEM and the English Language Learner

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At the end of every school year I begin to prepare for the next school year by trying different teaching strategies with my outgoing group of students. Well, this year I decided to introduce my students to the engineering design process because all year long I have felt like something was missing from lessons. I teach at a school where about 90% of the our school’s population is Hispanic and … Read More →