Monthly Archives: November 2016

Light in Darkness #onegoodthing


Who knew such a simply thing would bring joy… Christmas lights hung around my whiteboards.

The oooo’s and aahhh’s brought smiles as students stepped into our room.  Festive was one description. 

One student even shared they were having a bad morning until they saw the lights.

Sometimes we just need to pause and take in the simple things.  Share a smile, an encouraging word.  We just need to pause and take a moment to see the goodness around us.

Light drives out darkness.

Reverse Quiz


As I was driving home this past week, thinking about a practice quiz from earlier that day, I wondered…
“What if I asked students to purposefully choose the wrong answers with support/reasoning they knew made the answer incorrect?  The goal, to get 0% correct…a reverse quiz.”

I’ve done similar things with mistake game, my favorite no, discussing our wrong answer analysis as small groups/whole class.  But maybe our next MC Monday will be this format.  There should be no green when we review our responses with Plickers.

I remember a discussion once with a colleague who told me that focusing on the wrong response would only confuse students.  I respectfully disagree.  I’ve seen how having students compare responses, similar/different allows them to develop understanding of the structure of expressions.  

I believe that this process and follow up discussion/students sharing why their response is wrong will allow them eliminate answers, which is a test taking skill.  

I believe it allows them room to take a risk and actually engage with the question.

If you have experience or suggestions, even links to research to support or otherwise, please share.  I look forward to seeing how this goes. 

Greatest Fear


I had the privelege to attend the Kentucky Teacher Advisory Council meeting today.  I leave these meetings in awe of the ideas colleagues share, amazed at the things they’re doing in their classrooms and districts.  

Today I felt guilty.  Not that I didn’t belong, but that I have not lived up to the expectation I set for my own students.  I have withered back, let someone silence my voice.  I have failed my school, my colleagues, my students by not being my best.  

I’ve become something I despise. Complacent. Mediocre.

Education Commissioner, Dr. Pruitt shared part of this quote in response to something a TAC member said…

Our Greatest Fear 

Marianne Williamson

it is our light not our darkness that most frightens us

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.

Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.

It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us.

We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous,
talented and fabulous?

Actually, who are you not to be?

You are a child of God.

Your playing small does not serve the world.

There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.

We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.

It’s not just in some of us;  it’s in everyone.

And as we let our own light shine,
we unconsciously give other people
permission to do the same.

As we are liberated from our own fear,
Our presence automatically liberates others.

—Marianne Williamson
Tears filled my eyes. 

Tomorrow I will begin my journey back.

A clip from Akeelah and the Bee my friend and colleague shared. Akeelah & the Bee