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Student Reflection: How You Make It Happen

Welcome to the Sustainable Teacher and what is part two of this series on student reflection.  Last week we discussed the what and the when, so be sure to go back and give episode 62 a listen if you haven’t already, and today’s episode we’re focusing on the how of student reflection.

Now, if you’re anything like me and the hundreds of teachers I’ve worked with, you already are feeling a bit anxious about spending class time on student reflection rather than content, so it’s important to make sure the student reflection is efficient while remaining authentic.  Last week I gave tips on how you can keep the reflection authentic, and today we’ll talk about how to keep it efficient and effective.

After listening to this episode, you’ll have a clear picture of how you can implement effective and time efficient student reflection strategies in your classroom so that your students are empowered in their learning and investing...

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Binder, Interactive Notebook, Digital Notebook Oh My!

In last week’s episode, episode 59 where I talked about streamlining your content in order to have the time to actually put relationships first, the main recommendation was to put your content delivery into video.  There are many reasons why, and if you haven’t yet, be sure to go back and listen to those suggestions, but this week’s episode on creating one space for your students is in the same vein as streamlining your content.

Are we going to talk about Binders, Interactive Notebooks, and Digital Notebooks, oh my?  You betcha.

But this episode is more about streamlining your classroom, especially the aspects of it that are student facing, so you can use more of your time focusing on what matters - connecting with your students.

So what we’re going to streamline today is what, rather where, exactly our students house all of their materials and necessities for our class, and go over the purposes of this one spot for your students.

As chaotic as...

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What It Looks Like to Put Relationships First

When asking a group of teachers what has the most impact on their students’ performance in their classroom, the resounding answer I’ve heard in my career is without a doubt relationships - building relationships with our students that lets them know we are rooting for them, guiding them, and that allows them to trust us and invest in the course and what we’re asking them to do.

As much as we recognize that relationships have the most powerful impact on moving the needle with our students, all the other aspects of teaching that pile up in a day take precedence over taking the time to build relationships.

Today, I have a proposal on what it could look like to actually make relationship building a top priority.  And if there were a calendar of how you spent time in your classroom, this proposal I have for you would allow you to spend more time working one-on-one with your students, and ultimately building relationships than any other item on your docket. 

I...

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Ensure Teacher Health by Empowering Your Students

From ways to avoid the teacher hustle to how to make a big shift in your evaluation conversation, we've covered a few novel ways to prioritize teacher health in this series.  My sincerest hope is that in these five posts, which are concluding with this one, you've found nuggets of information or easy techniques to implement in order to put yourself first for a change without sacrificing your effectiveness in the classroom.

Perhaps your biggest allies in ensuring your teacher health are also the ones who might just threaten it the most... your students.

I mean that last statement in the most positive way possible - your students are who you show up for everyday.  Supporting them is the reason you entered this career field, right?  So let's support them in ways that allow you to better support more of them.  And we do that by empowering students inside the walls of your classroom.

When I think about and picture what causes teacher stress, I see the...

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