Deep Passion.Great Teaching. IGNITED

What Does The Pledge of Allegiance Mean?

The pledge

The pledge of allegiance is and always will be a controversial topic. With the increasing focus on inclusiveness based on linguistics, race, gender, and religion trying to find a balance can sometimes be difficult for advocates on both sides of the aisle. The end of the school year is a stressful time for teacher because we have so much to do. It’s not unusual for teachers to bump heads at … Read More →

We the People….


The day after the election saying that I was depressed is an understatement. One would think that I was depressed because Donald Trump won but that would be the furthest from the truth. I was so depressed because I dreaded going to work the day after the election to face my students. I work at a predominantly Hispanic school and I knew how hurt they would be if Donald Trump … Read More →

5 Ugly Truths About Workstations in the Urban Classroom

morning work

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 →

DIY: Creating Dry Erase Boards Using Sheet Protectors and Card Stock


Owning a classroom set of dry erase board can be considered a luxury for some teachers. Some teachers are fortunate to have individual dry erase boards in their classrooms. So, if you are new teacher or a teacher who works in a school with limited resources then this blog post is for you! I have been teaching for 15 years and I don’t think I got my first set of … Read More →

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


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 →

3 Ways to Survive Preparing Students for Standardized Testing

standardized testing

No matter how you feel about standardized testing it is the standard by which students and teachers are held accountable. Like many veteran educators I can vaguely remember when standardized tests were not used for promotion and retention. The teacher’s grades were the sole deciding factor that determined whether or not a student either passed or failed. Ahhh….the good old days! Now back to reality. Every January I, like many … Read More →

Simplifying Fractions is Just NOT that Simple!


Before school let our for the Christmas break I was at my wits end with trying to teach equivalent fractions and simplifying fractions to students who were deficient in their understanding of the “true” meaning of multiplication and division. I know that there are so many different skills that students need to have mastered before they can simplify fractions. I had to face the fact that the students who were … Read More →

Classroom Management: The Power of Making Connections

Interactive notebooks-lawson (1)

This week I had the opportunity to work with the teachers at Lawson Academy. The teachers at Lawson Academy are young and eager to learn. The first day I introduced the teachers to classroom management strategies. My approach to classroom management includes making connections with your students. These connections are relationships that are connections that are made outside of the academic arena. For example, throughout the school year I make … Read More →

Managing Tier 2 Behavior with Class Dojo


I have been using Class Dojo in my classroom for 2 years. I started using Class Dojo as my primary behavior management system because I liked that the program because it did not only focused on consequences but it also had a reward system as well. When I first began to use the program I’m sure that I was using it as most teacher do to manage the overall classroom … Read More →

3 Tried and True Ways to Help Struggling Readers Comprehend Nonfiction

abe and me

Teaching reading to students is a complex task especially for teachers in Title I schools, because most of the students do not come to kindergarten with the 1,000 lap hours needed for reading readiness. Now add the push for more nonfiction text in elementary and you have have a train wreck waiting to happen. I am learning first hand what effect this early exposure to nonfiction text is having on … Read More →