Tag: Jack Berckemeyer

Do We Still Believe?

Some things we as educators choose to forget: situations and events such as troublesome students, disastrous meetings with parents, or ugly disputes over which grade level gets to read (or has to read) Beowulf. Other memories hang around like the chalk dust that still lingers in our lungs. Happily, not all of our school-related memories are

Why Johnny Can’t Sing, Dance, Saw, or Bake

For decades we’ve heard why Johnny can’t read, write, or do simple math. Whenever there is a crisis in American education, we tend to rally the troops to make drastic changes so Johnny can finally learn how to be successful in a subject, class, or school. This system of panic and policies seems to have

The Battle over Student Engagement

I can’t claim to be a major history buff, nor can I recite all of the major battles of the European Campaign in World War II. But I have learned one important lesson from war movies such as Saving Private Ryan and The Bridge on the River Kwai. The simple lesson is this: often, it’s the smaller battles

Becoming a Team

Creating and nurturing an effective team takes time—and it’s well worth the effort

Using Team Time Effectively

The hardest part of taming a team is to keep everyone on task and focused during team meetings. Just as in the circus, a middle school team meeting can have several things going on at the same time. Teachers are coming and going at various times, there are endless interruptions, and at any moment the