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The Number One Tool Your Classroom Needs Right Now

Hey there and welcome to the Sustainable Teacher Podcast/Blog about the number one tool your classroom needs right now. 

We are in a time of transition in education as we head back to normal or at least to some sort of new normal.  You are probably right in the middle of the teacher-hustle, and you’re reflecting on the changes you want to make to your daily teaching life so that it’s a bit more sustainable, am I right?

Either way, the tool that I’m going to tell you about today is one that’s going to help you take practical steps towards a more sustainable and effective classroom in the modern times of education.  It’s going to help you take steps towards more evenings focused on your family and less weekends spent grading papers, all while maintaining or even increasing your effectiveness in the classroom.

Want to know what the number one tool is?

It’s the Flipped Classroom Starter Kit I’ve built to help you do ...

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The Biggest Secret to Sustainability in the Classroom

 What is the Biggest Secret to Sustainability in the Classroom?  Teachers do some of the most impactful and important work, and keeping them in the classroom is our top priority here on the podcast and for team Teach On A Mission, and we work to do that by helping teachers build sustainable systems and practices in their classrooms.

Sometimes it’s hard to have these conversations about doing things that sustain teachers because it feels guilty to focus so much on the adult in the room rather than the students.  That narrative, along with the status quo of teacher hustle equating to effectiveness, is what’s ultimately driving teachers away from the classroom.

Could we overdo it by focusing too much on the teacher and not enough on the students?  Of course we could - there are two ends of extreme to every choice, and I choose to live somewhere comfortably in the middle as much as possible, including when it comes to building an effective...

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Can I Help You With Student Accountability?

The million dollar question in education right now is how in the world we get our students to do the work?  It seems we have alarming rates of failure and, week after week, a substantial amount of students just not doing the work.  In the flipped classroom, this has always been one of the top questions I’ve fielded from teachers when they come to me for help to get the flipped classroom process started, and that is “What happens when a student doesn’t do the work, meaning take the notes, at home?  Then what?”

This week we will dive into what it is to actually hold students accountable and how you  can use it to not only be a more effective educator, but one who is actually reducing your own to-do list as student accountability increases.  After listening to this episode, you will have clarity around what it means to hold your students accountable in ways that empower your students to own their learning, and ultimately reduce...

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Are You Tired of Low Student Engagement?

Who would have known almost a year ago that we would all have experienced such a monumental change in our lives that showed us just how important and effective having students in the classroom with us is for student engagement.  Who would’ve known?

Somewhere in the middle of my second year of teaching, I vividly remember a moment when I realized, it’s got to get better quickly - meaning, I’ve got to stop engaging more and working harder than my students when it comes to understanding the content.  I’m not the one taking the test and I care a whole lot more than they do.  Side bar - of you course you do, you’re the teacher in the room, but feeling exhausted at the end of the day because of all your hard work just to have black screens or non-engaged students is not what’s going to keep you going in this career field.  

No matter how long you’ve been teaching, this year and your experiences with distance learning have...

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My Flipping Conversation with the Master IEP Coach

Hey there teacher friend!  Today I’ve got a bit of a different episode for you.  A few months back I sat down with Catherine Whitcher, the Master IEP Coach of specialedinnercircle.com and catherinewhitcher.com to chat about the possibilities of the flipped classroom in today’s education context and how the flipped classroom can serve teachers at the IEP table and their students.

This interview was done for Catherine’s podcast which I encourage you to go check it out, it’s called Special Education Inner Circle, and so she is actually interviewing me.  I loved our conversation so much that I wanted to share it on my podcast as well.  At the end of the episode you’ll hear me talk about dates long past for the Sustainable Teacher Challenge, but have no fear you can still go check that out here.

From a basic understanding of flipped learning to how the flipped classroom can serve you and your students long after distance learning, this...

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Organization in the Sustainable Classroom

Today on the Sustainable Teacher Podcast I am excited to welcome Kelly Jackson of Thesimplyorganizedteacher.com so we can chat about something that many of you have resolved to accomplish in 2021.  Many teachers who have participated in our Sustainable Teacher Challenge where we all are challenged to find ways to make our daily teaching lives a bit more manageable, actually set goals around becoming more organized.  Whether you set those kinds of goals or have an interest in getting all things teacher-life a bit more organized, then this episode is for you.

Kelly is a former teacher of little turned Classroom Organization Coach.  She helps busy and overwhelmed teachers create organized, safe, and well-managed classrooms that facilitate effective learning for their students and more time for themselves. She is a Texas girl currently living in Germany. Kelly runs The Simply Organized Teacher, hosts the Simply Teach podcast, and is the creator of The Organized Teacher...

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Flipping in a Blended Classroom

"I wish I had flipped my classroom a year ago."

Or, "I couldn't imagine this transition without having flipped my classroom first."

Both are statements I've heard from teachers who I've worked with to flip their classrooms.

2020 and teaching in a pandemic has certainly thrown us all for a loop.  No one could have predicted it or prepared for it, but it's certainly taught us two huge lessons in the education world...

1. An accessible classroom was no longer just a nice feature, it became a necessity. 

AND

2.  Building the plane while flying it is no way to teach kids or survive the experience as their teacher.  It's just not sustainable.

What I would like to propose though is that flipping the classroom has given some teachers an advantage in the huge transition that has been teaching in 2020.

But, here's the thing, that fact helps no one other than those who were already flipping.  So true.  But I'd like to show some ways we can take the basic...

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Virtual Teacher Series: A More Sustainable Workflow

*Welcome to the Virtual Teacher Series.  Be sure to check out week one and week two's posts**

Think back to your first year of teaching (for our first or second year teachers, just hang with me through this visualization).  Remember how incredibly energized and gung-ho you were for all things teaching (not that you aren’t that now, but let’s just say you’ve got a dash more wisdom to go with your energy levels).  If you were anything like me, you were a yes-man or woman.  And I don’t just mean that you said yes to every request to join all the committees or teams.  I mean that you said yes to every idea and resource you found.  Of course we all did this, we were fresh without a stocked bag of tips and tricks, we had to say yes to everything.

But, for many of us, we also said yes to everything we did with our students.  Yes to using that resource during our lecture, yes to the homework assignment that shouldn’t take that...

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Virtual Teacher Series: Testing

In various live Q&A sessions I do with groups of teachers in my programs, whether that’s the weekly Q&A in Flipped Classroom Formula or either of the monthly Q&A sessions I do for Sustainable Psych Teacher or my Insider’s Group, one of the most asked questions and top concerns teachers have had in preparing for and implementing their blended or virtual classrooms this year has been…

Testing.

Welcome to week two of the 5-part Virtual Teacher Series where we at Teach On A Mission™ hope to shine a light of positivity on all the hard work being done by teachers to prepare the virtual aspects of their classrooms, as well as offer some encouragement and strategies for those teachers.

This week we are focusing on, you guessed it, testing in the virtual classroom.  (If you haven't yet, now would be a good time to go check out week one's post here).

Testing in the traditional classroom is a pain in and of itself.  It’s one that teachers...

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Virtual Teacher Series: Your Influence

After a two month hiatus, I'm so glad to get back to blogging each week with the goal of providing a place of encouragement, and maybe a few tips, for teachers.  My hope is that this tiny spot on the internet can be one that  you routinely, albeit quickly, visit to fill up your cup as you take on each  week as a virtual teacher.  But, you know what I blame for a two month interlude from consistently blogging each week????  Three words...

Back to school.

The months of August and September this year were incredibly unique and I think it took most of us, or at least it did me, by surprise.  As a child, I was one of those kids who secretly geeked out about the back to school season.  School shopping, picking out my own supplies that were color coordinated for my classes (#extra), setting out my outfit for the first days of school, and getting back into the fresh start that is the beginning of the school year, year after year, was something I always...

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