Today on The Heinemann Podcast, how can teachers improve their practice around LGBTQ needs in the classroom? It’s October 11th, National Coming Out Day. A day for those who identify as LGBTQ to be visible. A day to say you matter, you’re not alone. How can educators make their classrooms a safer place for LGBTQ students and why is it important for both LGBTQ teachers and students to see schools as a safe place? Heinemann author Kate Roberts and Heinemann Fellow Jess Lifshitz talk more about the importance for our classrooms to be safe places.
In his latest book, Embarrassment, And The Emotional Undelife of Learning, Tom Newkirk digs into the roots of what inhibits us as learners in and out of the classroom and offers strategies and practices that help kids and teachers alike develop a more resilient approach to embarrassment. Tom says "I contend that if we can take on a topic like embarrassment and shame, we can come to a richer, more honest, more enabling sense of who we are and what we can do." The following is adapted from Tom's chapter on shame in the math classroom.
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When I mentioned the title of the chapter, “Math Shame,” to a fellow editor, she replied, “Actually I feel no shame at all. I’m just not good at math and I’m fine with that.”
There is probably no other required subject area, that we so regularly divide into the haves and have-nots—the ones good at math and then the rest of us. Math class is the motherland of the fixed mindset. For most of us, math never becomes a language, something that we can be fluent in. I suspect that for proficient math students equations must feel like sentences, as if there is a ready and seemingly natural syntax at their disposal.
Students may feel anxiety when the dial is turned to pure mathematical formulation too soon. And it occurs when the goal, always, is getting the exact right answer— when a good approximation will do.
No one escapes embarrassment. Both students and teachers face it every day in school and its influence affects our willingness to take risks. How might our fear of failure, of not living up to expectations, be holding us back? How can our fear of embarrassment affect how we learn, how we teach, and how we live?
Excerpted from The Curious Classroom by Harvey “Smokey” Daniels
When you live with thirty other human beings for 180 days in a row, sad things and bad things can happen. Individual children or the whole group will encounter struggles, worries, losses, changes, or emergencies. It’s not whether, but when.
Many of these happenings are predictable and expectable. A class pet dies. Then someone breaks a bone. Someone moves away. Someone has a sick parent or grandparent. Someone’s family is in a car crash. There’s a bullying incident on the playground. A big storm rages through town. There’s scary news on TV and adults are agitated about it.
Here are some ways to support students when dealing with these crises in your classroom:
On Saturday, July 29th, Heinemann celebrated its fifth annual teacher tour. Each year we invite teachers from all over to join us at our home office to learn from our authors, share in thinking and learning together, and tour the historic mill building that we call home. This year, we were pleased to host authors Ralph Fletcher, Grace Kelemanik, Valerie Bang-Jansen, Mark Lubkowitz, and Cornelius Minor. Each author led a forty minute PD workshop session for the tour participants.
Were you unable to make it to this year's teacher tour? Fear not! We recorded each session LIVE for Facebook, and you can watch all of the videos below, along with the day's tweets and some presenter materials.
Teacher evaluation can be tough for everyone involved. And in the context of literacy instruction, teachers and administrators oftentimes are not on the same page when it comes to understanding what good literacy instruction looks like, and what criteria to set for evaluation.
In Making Teacher Evaluation Work, Rachael Gabriel and Sarah Woulfin examine the roles of teachers, teacher leaders, coaches, and principals in supporting high-quality literacy instruction in the context of accountability and evaluation policy.