In the Lou

Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap

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Aug 27 2008

Post Script from Year 2

I forgot to share this retrospective video that I made for our students’ promotion day ceremony. I’m sure I’ll remember other things, but this gives you a good glimpse of the fun we had!

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Aug 01 2008

MAP Results: My schools rocked the test

I’m currently in Chicago for a training on AVID for school, but this article appeared in the paper today. It discusses how, on the whole, middle schools were the best performers in the state. In particular, three St. Louis Public Schools’ middle schools were the best performers in the region. Among them… my school! St.…

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Jun 06 2008

An offer to a student against the odds

Dear G…, I wanted to write you to let you know how proud I am of all your hard work this year. You have shown that you have the ability to be an excellent student. Your hard work on projects during the year and your awesome grade on the end-of-year test are proof of your…

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I can’t legitimately say that I need some time to think what I should be typing right now since I haven’t updated anyone in quite some time. So I won’t put it off, but I am needing to think along the way. Fortunately or unfortunately for you, this is going to be lengthy. Part 1:…

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Apr 19 2008

Science is real life stuff

Nothing is more exciting as a teacher than having a very real-world example for my students in order for them to connect their classroom knowledge to the world around them. At approximately 4:37 a.m. Friday the opportunity came knocking. This is the approximate time that

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Apr 04 2008

Music videos from my classroom

I’ve recently been into the glorious land of DonorsChoose for the first time. This is a site where you can write proposals for things one might need in the classroom. When I returned from my summer travels, my digital camera had transformed itself into a paperweight. So, I wrote a proposal. And it got funded!…

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Mar 05 2008

The definition of unfortunate

I’m a good sport. But getting hoodwinked out of a day off twice in one year is a bummer. I got a wake up call this morning at 5:53 a.m. My friend at school was calling to let me know that we were having another snow day. This was good news minus the fact that…

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Mar 04 2008

A week without teaching

Even though it was 70 degrees and sunny on Sunday, it is snowing like the dead of winter in St. Louis today. In fact, this is our biggest storm of the year. More than 8.5 inches has already blanketed the airport, the place of our official readings. Eating Ted Drewes while wearing short sleeves seems…

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Jan 08 2008

Awesomely Awful Science Jokes

While trying to spice up a lesson on the metric system and how to make metric conversions using the Metric Shuffle (using the popular song Cupid Shuffle as inspiration), I manufactured these half-original jokes. Q: What do you get when you put ten cards together? A: One dekacards. Q: If I had one million microphones,…

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Dec 17 2007

Supposedly Happy Holidays

Deck the halls. Fa la la la la. The holidays are a time of cheer for everyone. I wish I could insert one of those screeching sound effects like would happen right now if this were a television show. Then I, your narrator, could come on and prepare us for a story that differs. No…

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While I was working for Dateline NBC in the summer of 2004, I researched about the "meth epidemic" sweeping the midwest. Towns small and big ravaged by the effects of this horribly addictive drug. I never thought that the meth dealers would have any impact on my life directly. Just for the record… I don’t…

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This past Friday, at the stroke of 3 p.m., every teacher was entitled to run out of the building — the shackles of professional development released. But this Friday, it was not until nearly 5 p.m. that the eighth grade team finally escaped from the building. Since nearly 2 p.m. we had been toiling over…

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This morning, I nearly had a teacher-freak because I had diligently planned a performance event for students. They were to create atomic models of one element. I admit that I did assume that they knew one part, but even when I stripped the assignment back down to the bare minimum, the students were floundering and…

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Sep 30 2007

Second verse not the same as the first

The hardest part about becoming an excellent teacher is constantly feeling like an un-excellent teacher. I don’t need to walk around admitting this to people, but this internal struggle bears down upon my spirit. In all honesty, I will never wake up completely content with the job I’m doing.

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I’ve decided my ultimate classroom would come with anti-theft protection. I can only imagine the pleasure I’d get as that buzzer at the door sounded and some nondescript voice calmly asked, “Please return to the teacher’s desk for further inspection.” Finally putting an end to kids’ petty pilfering would be nice. But the real reason…

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Aug 21 2007

Really hot diggety dog

I think this can be summarized as “AWESOME” SLPS Announces Early Release Day for Wednesday, August 22 St. Louis – Superintendent Diana Bourisaw announced today that students in all St. Louis Public Schools will be released early on Wednesday, August 22, due to excessive heat. The dismissal time for schools will vary, depending upon each…

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Last Sunday, the St. Louis Post Dispatch ran an article on the front page of the paper listing the hardships that new teachers face. If you want to read something that paints a picture worthy of being labeled part of Picasso’s Blue Period, just click here. I’m not necessarily inclined to say that teaching is…

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Aug 13 2007

Summer ended 14 minutes ago

At the time I started writing this post, it was 12:14 am. Today is the day that school starts again. (Not for kids, just for teachers.) I could and should be sleeping. Instead, I’m here, finally confronting my talkative inner-self who I’ve been avoiding for the past two weeks since getting back from my summer…

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About this Blog

a Teach for America science teacher in St. Louis

Region
St. Louis
Grade
Middle School
Subject
Science

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