Monthly Archives: January 2010

Great Teachers

Have you ever known a great teacher? You probably have. Perhaps she was your teacher. Perhaps he was your child’s teacher. You know it when you see it. But can you describe it? And can our school systems replicate it? … Continue reading

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Right away, certain patterns emerged. First, great teachers tended to set big goals for their students. They were also perpetually looking for ways to improve their effectiveness. For example, when Farr called up teachers who were making remarkable gains and asked to visit their classrooms, he noticed he’d get a similar response from all of them: “They’d say, ‘You’re welcome to come, but I have to warn you—I am in the middle of just blowing up my classroom structure and changing my reading workshop because I think it’s not working as well as it could.’ When you hear that over and over, and you don’t hear that from other teachers, you start to form a hypothesis.” Great teachers, he concluded, constantly reevaluate what they are doing. Superstar teachers had four other tendencies in common: they avidly recruited students and their families into the process; they maintained focus, ensuring that everything they did contributed to student learning; they planned exhaustively and purposefully—for the next day or the year ahead—by working backward from the desired outcome; and they worked relentlessly, refusing to surrender to the combined menaces of poverty, bureaucracy, and budgetary shortfalls.

Right away, certain patterns emerged. First, great teachers tended to set big goals for their students. They were also perpetually looking for ways to improve their effectiveness. For example, when Farr called up teachers who were making remarkable gains and … Continue reading

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Do you think America needs more pubs? Do you love the community and the music in little villages and know that all the world’s problems might possibly be solved if we all stopped by on a Saturday night? You’ll enjoy this Peter Mayer song.

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Ever want to escape from life? And go to your happy place? Here’s Peter Mayer’s take on it.

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Driving with My Knee, Peter Mayer

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Inaugural Post

Blogging. Thought about it for a while. Tumblr seems easy. Gonna try it. And see what I think. Stay tuned.

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