One Year

imagesCAWGU7RDIn one year, I have finally managed to tie my instruction firmly and transparently to useful, responsible, and clear standards of knowledge and skill.

In one year, I will know whether I can continue these better practices with the Common Core.

In one year, I have tightened my time management, paperwork, and documentation to the point that not only can I show any random person my own growth, but the kids can show me theirs.

In one year, I will know whether this growth is reflected in our new state teacher evaluations.

In one year, I will have completed two semesters of teaching as a National Writing Project Fellow.

In one year, the National Writing Project may disband due to lack of federal funding.

In one year, I have determined that consistent, copious, extended, evidence-based assessments and portfolio work challenge my kids the most, and draw out from them the most accurate reflection of what’s inside those wonderful minds.

In one year, my livelihood will be judged upon their standardized test scores.

In one year, I have inched closer tangibly to becoming the teacher I want to be.

And in one year, I will likely know whether any of that matters.

I’m pitching and drafting an article for Education Week on line about it, and will link it if it gets published. Going to be quite a summer, thinking about it all.

And it’s going to be a hell of a year.

Have a restful break, everyone, and stay tuned.

2 thoughts on “One Year

  1. Way to go in one year! I do hope your article gets published, as I would like to read it. I would also love input on how you managed to accomplished your time management, paperwork, and documentation, as well as your thoughts on successful portfolios. This summer, I have to get back to the blog I started mid-year and post irregularly to! I appreciate your blog entry.

  2. Thank you, Kristin!

    I might shape up a post on paperwork tackling techniques over the summer, as this remains a big bear for English teachers– thanks for the idea and the comment.

    Any time management improvements I credit to Doug Lemov’s _Teach Like A Champion_. I have several strong philosophical objections to claims he makes in the book, but that doesn’t diminish the usefulness of some of his techniques.

    Portfolios remain essential (and experimental) in my classroom. My challenge remains how to effectively implement inquiry-type lessons and reflections within the hard-edged box of an Industrial Era school system. More on that in the coming year too, probably. 🙂

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