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Organizational Structures

The Grief of Accepting New Ideas

The Grief of Accepting New Ideas

Changes in school or classroom practices unleash a variety of emotions. How can we support each other in the process?

The faculty lounge crackles with disagreements about the new grading policies suggested by the standards-based grading committee. The English department debates whether or not grammar proficiency is a requisite for...
Author: Rick Wormeli
Number of views (13563)/Comments (1)/
Memorization Still Matters

Memorization Still Matters

Benefits of quick access to working memory and 25 memorization techniques

In a world in which we can always look things up, memorization still matters. Depending on the situation, engagement, meaning, progress, expediency, and safety are increased significantly if participants have the...
Author: Rick Wormeli
Number of views (5525)/Comments (0)/
Topics: Teaching
Cheating and Plagiarizing

Cheating and Plagiarizing

Ben reads below grade level, and knows that if he whines about how unfair school is, his dad will cave in and do most of the work for him. Jacqueline knows how to do the math, but she doesn't think she should...
Author: Rick Wormeli
Number of views (22471)/Comments (0)/

We Have to Prepare Students for the Next Level, Don't We?

Some universities blame the poor academic performance of their young adult students on the poor quality instruction they think students received in high schools. High schools blame the middle schools, middle schools...
Author: Rick Wormeli
Number of views (17818)/Comments (0)/

Do Teachers Remain Neutral or Share their Beliefs with Students?

Politics, Racism, Religious, Classism, Sexual Orientation: Do Teachers Remain Neutral or Share their Beliefs with Students? I struggle to respect the opinions of those who believe the earth is only 6,000 years...
Author: Rick Wormeli
Number of views (24529)/Comments (0)/
Topics: Teaching

Graphic Representations of Student Achievement

Let's interpret the data as it's written: 80, 90, 0, check, check-minus, absent, 55, 87, absent, 77, one day late 90, check, 90, check, 12, 91, check, check, 88, absent, 84, check, check, check, check, check, absent,...
Author: Rick Wormeli
Number of views (11537)/Comments (0)/

Teaching Students Responsibility

For as long as humans have lived on Earth, generations of adults have bemoaned the lack of due diligence in the upcoming generation: "They're indifferent and don't work hard," they declare. "We have to teach them...
Author: Rick Wormeli
Number of views (19615)/Comments (0)/

Confronting Our Assumptions and Biases

When my wife and I were thinking of names for our children, and yes, our dogs, they were difficult conversations. As you probably understand, some of the students I've taught through the years were particularly rough...
Author: Rick Wormeli
Number of views (10393)/Comments (0)/

Middle School, not Junior High

We are a middle school, not a junior version of high school. To be effective in our teaching, we are developmentally appropriate for young adolescents, not for 16- to 18-year-olds nor for 8- and 9-year-olds. There is...
Author: Rick Wormeli
Number of views (20615)/Comments (0)/
Principles First

Principles First

Effective teachers strive to make their actions reflect their principles.

The afternoon is a rush of activity. Your mind is on hyper switch-tasking mode, denying the growing reality that you'll never get it all done. On the way to the school office to pick up your mail, grab your lunch bag...
Author: Rick Wormeli
Number of views (8042)/Comments (0)/
Topics: Teaching
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