If you're like me, as soon as you return from holiday break you begin really thinking about STAAR prep, especially if you have an early test like I do. This 3rd quarter is down-to-business time for me because we don't have much time after spring break before we take our reading test. It's the same… Continue reading STAAR Prep for Secondary English- It’s never too early!
Ready, Set, Learn Keeping up with changing state standards can be tough. They usually stay the same for a time, but when the state overhauls them, it usually means teachers need to start rewriting or retooling their curriculum. Though I've been teaching for 20 years, I'm too ADD to be one of those teachers who… Continue reading Gettin’ My Learn On- Part Two of a Week of Professional Development
Looking for the Magical Unicorn Pretty much every English teacher I know thinks that finding a good way to teach grammar is an elusive and frustrating task. Finding a comprehensive, year-long grammar program that fits all the student expectations that the state has assigned to your grade level is a daunting task, and one that… Continue reading Yes, I’m the Grammar Guru- Creating a Year’s Worth of Middle School Grammar
Last week I got to do one of my very favorite lessons of all time. Don't you love those days? You can go to school knowing that you're going to get to teach something way cool that you feel good about all day long. In my case, I got to teach it for two days… Continue reading Seeing Red: Teaching Symbolism by Close Reading Text and Film
Changing my mindset Five years ago, I moved from teaching in a public school to teaching in a charter after 15 years. One of the hardest things for me to wrap my brain around was that my new school did not focus on state testing. They knew it was a necessary evil, and our… Continue reading Game on! Using games as test prep in the secondary classroom