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Fresh Eyes:  Seeing Work Through the Lens of Proficiency
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Fresh Eyes: Seeing Work Through the Lens of Proficiency

Through my posts on this blog, I’m tracking my experiences, as both a novice teacher (in regards to proficiency) and as a more veteran teacher, with ten years of public high school teaching in my past.  This first two months of being back in the classroom, after five years outside of public schools, have been […]

Singapore American School Visit Catapults Us On Our Path
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Singapore American School Visit Catapults Us On Our Path

University School of Milwaukee World Language Teachers Share Their Notes From Visit to the Singapore American School This past May 2017, my colleagues, Alison Dupee, LS French teacher; Neelie Barthenheier, a MS French teacher and LS and MS World Language Chair; and I returned on fire with inspiration to grow as 21st-century world language educators. […]

Keeping My Eye On A New Path…
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Keeping My Eye On A New Path…

After a long time, and an ‘aha’ moment, I’m introducing proficiency this year as a key part of my students’ learning. I’m using it fully with my Yr1&2’s this semester. There’s been much thinking and reworking of ideas with the help of colleagues, the resources on P2P and the ever-generous #langchat PLN.  I know that […]

Where They’re At.
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Where They’re At.

I ended last school year with a new practice I’ve come to love–cleaning my classroom while reflecting on the year and creating a goals board for the next one.  I left the last two summers feeling ready to leave, disconnect and return to work refreshed with goals and ideas in place.  This fall, the goals […]

Unpacking My Old Classroom Practices
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Unpacking My Old Classroom Practices

This fall, I’m returning to the high school classroom after being away from teaching students for five years.   During this time, I made an effort to remain professionally active and connected, and I learned more than I would have if I had been working full-time, thanks to social media, professional organization, podcasts, and conferences.   Since […]

The Power of Pause
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The Power of Pause

Three seconds. Research has shown that giving students at least three seconds of think time after asking a question increases results in a number of ways. Yet, with time constraints and our students’ waning attention spans, we are continually pressured to crank out questions and answers, call on a variety of students, make sure everyone feels good, […]

Comparison: Challenging Tool or Thief of Joy?
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Comparison: Challenging Tool or Thief of Joy?

Have you ever had someone say something so startling that, in an instant, their words seem to smack you in the face with a reality check? I recently had one of those moments: an abrupt and much-needed a-ha! moment, that reminded me to be my best teacher self, I need to give myself grace and keep it all in […]

Creating Classroom Community
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Creating Classroom Community

We all talk about building classroom community and building relationships with the students, but I have to share a story with you all. I recently lost my voice for two weeks, which really messed with my identity as a teacher, much less a language teacher. But even though we’d only been in school a few weeks, […]