Tweet Any time I’m asked to reflect or write about what I believe about education, I always seem to talk about the class’s last project. No matter what we’ve been exploring, the work is so inspiring, I want everyone to know about it. The latest project my third grade class completed illustrates everything I believe […]

Tweet My first year teaching I had a class of thirty students. I worked with them all year, and was asked daily whether or not they could make paper airplanes during math or eat their lollipop that accidentally fell into their backpack at school. And yet, for the entire insane requests, at the most inappropriate […]

How Was Your Weekly Ride?

by Patrick on December 17, 2010

Tweet Uphill Climbs A Tough Cookie- I have a student whose behavior has been a challenge and no matter what strategies I use, I can’t make it work. Having a meeting tomorrow to solve the problem. My Grandma- My Grandma had to move out of her house into a hospital care facilities. It’s hard being […]

Tweet Nielson recently took a survey on the most in demand gifts for kids in 2010. Apple products overwhelmingly dominated the “must have” toys this holiday season.The results? I-phone G4 I pod touch 3-I pad. The rest of the list included the Harry Potter Lego Video Game, Kinect for X-box, camera videophones, and Barbie Video […]

Tweet Over the last two weeks, the suicides of four teens has pushed the issue of cyber-bullying to the front of our public mind. You can’t open a newspaper, watch the Today Show or log on to without facing the issue. Children all over this country are using technology to intimidate, threaten each other, […]

The Label of “Special Ed”

by Patrick on October 5, 2010

Tweet “I’m not special ed, and I’m not going to that stupid classroom anymore. I’m going to be in the regular classroom just like any one else,” screamed my brand spanking new student. I was taken back both by her confidence and her small size. I was even more surprised because this was open house. […]

Tweet I met with a mother a few days ago to discuss how her daughter was progressing. Her daughter had been “diagnosed” with ADHD and an auditory processing disorder. Her previous school was making weekly (sometimes daily!) phone calls to report on the “problem child.” That mother seemed to be carrying the weight of the […]

Tweet When I was growing up, I wasn’t good at any of three R’s. I was slow to read. My writing was atrocious and my arithmetic even worse. I never got high marks or recognition for any of the core academic areas. I just wasn’t smart like that. What I was good at was being […]

The Case for Charter Schools

by Patrick on September 7, 2010

Tweet About every week a parent asks me, “What’s a charter school?” A charter school is a public school that is autonomous from the school district. They were started in the 1991 and 1992 in order to reform public schools. The problem Ray Budde saw was that schools were becoming increasingly homogeneous. Kids all over […]

Getting Your Kid Talking

by Patrick on August 24, 2010

Tweet The other day I was visiting a friend’s house whose child was notorious for being tight lipped about school. Her mother had just told me the other day how impossible it was to get her child to divulge the well guarded secrets of her day. Well in five minutes of talking to the kid […]