Grace and American Education: An Open Letter to President Barack Obama

  Dear Mr. President,    Predicated on dissatisfaction for a job half-done, Joseph Thrasher recently took measure of your "Ten Days" in The Guardian. His criticism that recent victories for your administration barely met his expectations for hope and change was, however, penned in a half-hearted "doth protest" tone betrayed by his exhilaration for the pride that Americans could now feel in a president speaking ...

Summer Cleaning: Eliminating Bad Habits One at a Time

  Due to the frenzy and fragmentation of the school day and year—after an appropriate, gentle and well-earned transition—summer is the best time to sweep the shed, clear the cobwebs and put your tools in order ahead of the imminent next semester. Here’s a simple—but thorough—step-by-step process for making it happen: Reflect: Identify a challenge ...

Mature Measures: Teacher Preparation That Matters

What are your doctor’s MCAT scores? Strange question, I know. How about this one: where did your doctor go to medical school? Maybe more of us know the answer to this question, but not many. Studies by practioners like Harvard’s Ashi Jha (whose byline is “an ounce of evidence is worth a thousand pounds of ...

Who’s In Control? Minimalism in the Modern Learning Classroom

    “Simplicity is the most difficult thing to secure in this world; it is the last limit of experience and the last effort of genius.” –George Sand A couple of years ago my 10th Grade advisees asked my help in conveying to the rest of the faculty how overwhelming their technology demands were becoming. ...

Walking Together: Veteran’s Day Reflections

I lived in Europe as a 19 year old. Not as an exchange student or as a language teacher, but as an Infantryman during what, my later history teacher’s mind would recognize as the last gasp of the Cold War, an era of collapsing walls: an era where, with one swing of a sledgehammer (and 5DM), ...

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