Empathy and Classroom Community

“I’m just…over it.” I feel like I’ve heard and uttered this phrase more in the last 18 months than perhaps all the time before. No matter your persuasion when it comes to the events at hand, as an educator and a human there’s been plenty of things to be “over.” This is an opportunity. Remember […]

Time Well Spent

Every May, time accelerates. My classroom tasks and structures wrap up and I think: Where did the time go?  At that point in the school year, I look back on lessons we didn’t get to, units we abbreviated for good reason, and other unfinished business.  I wonder what happened.  And yet. August comes. I find myself […]

Test time: Why are we doing this?

I’m looking over my daily plans and outlining where our next steps should be today.  And I remember.  We can’t continue our 4th quarter review of writing conventions during that block.  We have to take the practice state test. Ask a third grader what they think about conventions of writing and you won’t get an […]


“Just how far down the rabbit hole are you going, Tim?” The question rings in my ears. It is my internal monologue. What rabbit hole is that? The rabbit hole in question is seasonal easter candy. The answer is: All. The. Way. Down. Jelly Beans. Yes. Starburst Jelly Beans, Nerds Jelly Beans, Trolly speckled Jelly […]

Slicing for 30 days: It Made a Difference

Almost there. To the finish. Here are some ways Slicing has made a difference for this middle aged third grade teacher (in no particular order): In the Classroom: I shared with my students that I was participating. They think of me as a writer. Now, to them, we are all writers. They talk with me […]

You just made my day!

“Wow. They are lucky to have you.” “Look at that! I knew you could do it!” “You worked so hard on that.” “You’ll be great at that!” “I made this for you.” “I was thinking about you, so…” “I was just thinking I should call you!” “I saved you a seat!” “I decided to wait […]

What is a Sunday?

Sundays have changed through my life; This Sunday I look back on what Sundays have been. What is a Sunday? A day to drag my feet and slow time down; Late breakfasts and news on TVTake long enough andMaybe feign sick or convince Mom to watch a movieMaybe stay home A day to write a paperOr […]

A lifetime in 4 years

“I have lived a lifetime in the last 4 years.” These are words I didn’t think I’d be thinking or saying again in my 40’s.  Life is funny like that.   Four years ago I was fresh into a career transition.  I had left my last job, a labor of love that cost me a small […]

What to watch when you can’t sleep

Inspired by Betsy‘s TV post yesterday, I made a list. Sometimes, it’s time and I’m not “sleepy.” Here are my favorite TV shows to watch if I want to fall asleep.   4.  The West Wing  This would work better without the soundtrack.  But with closed captions on, it’s a great way to read yourself to […]


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