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How to Use Stations in Your Classroom

Are you ready for a very practical, how-to episode today?  I hope so, because that’s exactly  what I’ve got for you when it comes  to implementing stations.  I try not to overwhelm you  on this podcast with “implement this now and solve all  your problems” strategies, because that’s just not how things work, and, at least for me, learning all kinds  of new things just clouds my thinking and vision, and I end up accomplishing less.

However, a nice how-to every now and then can be refreshing, and I hope that today’s episode is that for you,  and it’s all about stations and how they can be used in any classroom.

Now, who could use stations, what classrooms or students would it benefit?  And I want to answer  that question before we get started.  Really, any teacher at any  grade  level can use stations, but I recommend the use of stations, and wrote today’s episode...

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Four-Step Reflection Process for Every Teacher

Well hey there, and welcome back to the Sustainable Teacher Podcast, I’m so glad you’ve decided to join me today for this four-step reflection process every educator needs, and I’ll just add that every  teacher needs this if in fact they are feeling the pressure of all the change, and the overwhelm of seemingly never satisfying anyone whether it be parents, administration, or even our students.  Now, I recognize that never is a dramatic word, but I’m betting it describes how you feel right now regardless of if it’s dramatic or not, so I’m sticking with it.

I was on a walk with my nine-month old puppy the other day, and when I’m on walks that’s when my wheels really get to turning, most of the time in good ways.  Often I won’t even bring my headphones or listen to a podcast, although Ii’ve done that before, because the silence and the space for my mind to go where it wants leads me to some great ideas whether...

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Sustainable Ed Tech with Samantha Fecich

Well hey there and welcome back. I am so excited to have Samantha Fecich of EduMagic on the podcast today, and I’ll share a couple of reasons why.  First, I’ve recently  stepped into the higher ed  space, and she’s been there for a while, so it was nice to have a conversation within that context.  Secondly, as a special education teacher turned educational tech expert, she gives a refreshing perspective on ed tech in ways that reinvigorate my passion for the field and I think this conversation will do the same for you.

In this episode you will hear us chat about various topics including student-life balance for preservice teachers, tech tool (and non-tech tool) recommendations for preservice teachers, as well as the purpose and possibilities of educational technology for students today.  So no matter what you teach, this episode will be valuable for you, but will be especially valuable for pre-service teachers out there.

Without further...

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Being a Principal and Spouse to a Sustainable Teacher

Hey teacher-friend, welcome back to the Sustainable Teacher, I’m so glad you decided to tune in today, and oh boy do I have an episode for you.  In this episode I am introducing you to none other than my main-man and husband, Dr. Bill Rice.

I’m excited to bring him on not just because he’s my husband but also because he is an administrator - he is a high school principal at a school about 15 minutes down the road from us, and today he is offering a wonderful perspective.  Well, two perspectives actually, on what it is to be a sustainable teacher, and that is from a principal’s role and the role of a teacher’s spouse.

My goal in interviewing Bill is not so that we can say, “see this is what you should be doing” to either our principals or our spouses, but so that teachers can see that your sustainability is what’s most important, next to being effective with kids, and that the classroom atmosphere and overarching learning...

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Do You Need A Content Coach?

AP® Psychology, Intro to Psychology, Sociology, Hybrid Psychology, American History, Honors American History, Women and Minority Studies… all courses that I taught in my ten years in the classroom.  In each course I did have some materials from former teachers or current teams that were willing to collaborate, but I had to learn the content and standards of each of these courses… and this is nothing novel.  I’m betting you’ve had a similar experience whether you’ve had multiple preps or had to teach a new course.

And as I shared in last week’s episode, a teacher who has to focus on learning the content they teach, although that is important, is less able to focus on their students’ growth.

I’d like you to have both.  Know the content, well enough at least, and get to connect with kids and focus on their growth… all without having to sacrifice your evenings and weekends to do so.

My mission here at Teach On...

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Are Teachers the Top Influence on Student Learning?

The conversation and debate around what is best for students, and what impacts learning most is not a new one in the human experience.  It's been hotly debated for quite some time.

What impacts student learning most?

Are tests the best way to measure student learning?

Or, wait, don’t tests hinder learning?

How does technology impact learning?

Standards-based, flipped classroom, project-based, problem-based, student centered, backwards planning, flexible seating...

Wow - so many things.  So many ways to impact student learning.

How in the world do we know what strategies impact students the most?

That's just it... there is no ONE strategy that will impact student learning more than another.

But...

... there is one person.

If you're reading this post, this is probably no surprise to you that teachers are the number one influencer on a student's learning.

But I don't want to just say that and claim it as truth.  I want you to see for yourself.

And that’s...

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What’s Behind Teacher Self Talk?

I was doing a Facebook Live not too long ago, and at the end as I was trying to convey to teachers watching that I too am a teacher, working for myself now, reaching out to teachers with my message of teacher sustainability, and I caught myself saying “I’m just a teacher.”  And although I meant it in an endearing, relatable way, it still didn’t sit well with me that the word “just” wanted to creep in there.

Adding the word “just” means I’m nothing  more than, or I could’ve done more with my life, but instead I’m “just” a teacher.

Have you ever caught yourself saying this or something like this?  Maybe in a circle of friends who aren’t teachers?

Or how about this common saying, “Those who can, do.  Those who can’t, teach.”

Now, that’s just a saying, but it’s one we’ve all heard, and I’m sure had aimed at us in some way before even if it...

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Flipped Classroom Success Stories

Brenda in 4th grade, Keri in 7th grade math, Jessica in high school chemistry, Megan in Algebra 2, and Charles in high school ELA… all are teachers who flipped their classrooms this past school year and are now on the other side of their hard work reaping the rewards of the flipped model and ready to share their own and their student success with you.

I’m compiling experiences into this one episode and hope that the stories shared allow you to see the possibilities for your own classroom and daily teaching life.

After listening to this episode you’ll be inspired by the success teachers of the flipped classroom have found, and see yourself in their transformation, knowing that this time next year, your classroom or student success story will be told.

Let’s get to it.

Before we get started I want to point you to a resource that I think you’ll love seeing and that is all of the stories I’m going to be sharing with you today and WAY MORE are...

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The First Way to Find Balance as a Teacher

It’s the new year; gym memberships have soared through the roof, everyone under the sun has some kind of personal fitness goal that they are striving toward as a New Year’s resolution, so I thought I might contribute to that conversation.

Well... kinda.

The contribution won’t be about personal, physical health - although I'm totally game for a competition on my Apple watch - but instead about teacher health in general.

Over the next few weeks, five to be exact, I’ll be exploring a few topics that all have something to do with how we can improve teacher health. And what I mean by teacher health is a teacher's overall well-being including and especially their mental health as determined by things like time management skills, daily routines, mindset, and the small, seemingly insignificant choices we make on a regular basis that are contributing to poor teacher health as a whole.

Let me be more specific - what I mean by teacher health is small ways teachers can...

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