Mindsets
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Mindsets

I did not come to teaching via a direct path. I knew I wanted to help kids, but I started as a psychology major. After working for several years at a residential facility while pursuing my degree, I realized that perhaps there was a better way to help kids before they got “locked up.” Meanwhile, […]

Proficiency and Grading Mashup
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Proficiency and Grading Mashup

“I can’t put Intermediate 1 in the gradebook,” I declared to my class. “I wish I could, but I can’t.” I continued, “So how are we going to show the number equivalent to your proficiency rating?” It turns out that everyone’s fine with being on target unless it interferes with their GPA. Shelby County Schools, […]

Shifting Gears
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Shifting Gears

If students can’t use the language they are learning for practical – REAL WORLD – purposes then why do we do what we do? I think (desperately hope) that most teachers agree our focus should be on teaching students how to use the languages they are learning. Many of us have attended a workshop on proficiency or maybe […]

Some thoughts about the “g word”
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Some thoughts about the “g word”

No matter what group of teachers. No matter what the original topic of the conference session, workshop, or professional learning training. Without fail, at some point someone is going to ask the dreaded question: “But how do I grade this?” While I try to be as helpful as possible and provide some solutions for the […]

An EPIC Journey
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An EPIC Journey

Earlier this year, I like millions of others made a decision to work on myself this year. I didn’t call it a resolution because I wanted it to stick. Sparing you the details, I finally joined a gym. Not anything special, lots of people join gyms… but I joined a Crossfit gym, well it’s a […]

Tracking Proficiency
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Tracking Proficiency

When I taught in a charter middle school, the administration wanted us teachers to post summative data about our students–how they did on what test and what the criteria were. I was always behind on posting mine because we did so much formative assessment in class. As the only Spanish teacher in the school at […]

TELL Collab takeaway
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TELL Collab takeaway

“I feel like I cannot open my brain big enough to absorb all the information. I’m overwhelmed and excited,” I texted my wife about the TELL Collab. “:)” she replied. On June 26th and 27th, I had the great professional privilege of participating in the very first TELL Collab at the COERLL at University of […]