Literacy Learning in the Kitchen: Building Vocabulary, Practicing Procedural Thinking, and Learning to Tell Time

        At ages 3 and 2, Keith and Maceo, respectively, have little patience for workbooks and sitting down for long lengths of time as a means to “practice” literacy skills. So at this stage, to grow their vocabulary, build skill in strategic thinking, and support their practice of various ways of learning,…

Parents are the Frontline of Their Children’s Academic Achievement: A Book Review of I’m Your Teacher, Not Your Mother by Suzette Clarke

              Class is in session. In her self-published book, I’m Your Teacher, Not Your Mother, Suzette Clarke ignites a controversial conversation about the “true source” of student failure. While finger-pointing has typically designated teachers, schools, standardized tests, and standards as the source of fault, Clarke turns the finger to…

As Educational Frontiersman: One Man’s Calling to Make a Difference

On any given day, John R. Jenkins, Ed.D., can be found laboring in the fray, soldiering on the frontline of education. He is an irrepressible spirit who has embodied several educative incarnations.  As English/Language Arts teacher, teacher trainer, instructional coach, consultant, researcher, faculty member, administrator, and currently Vice President of Programs for the School Leaders…

Strength, Courage and Wisdom: The Makings of an Urban Teacher

In this article, Carla Cherry shares her personal and professional evolution, divulging how she helps students actualize their humanity and academic success.  It’s an intimate look into the makings of an English/Language Arts teacher, and the difference she is trying to make in students’ lives within the NYC educational system. Fundamental to her familial fabric…

The Principles of Effective Principals

A great mentor is one who asks you a question you never thought to ask yourself.  Here is a reflection on her question about what it is like to work with school principals (a work in progress).   My mentor Judith had us over for conversation and dinner a few months ago.  A question she…

The Makings of a Bad Teacher

  As prep for a state exam, the teacher created a lesson to review the cause and effects of WWII by having students view an amateur cartoon on YouTube, and then fill out answers to previous state exam questions.  On a different occasion, a teacher was reviewing geometric concepts in prep for the next day’s…