Posts Tagged ‘Teaching’
This is How Gratitude in a Broken World Looks
Tragedy Strikes A few weeks ago, on Monday, November 14, I woke up to the news that three students at the University of Virginia, where I teach–Devin Chandler, Lavel Davis Jr., and D’Sean Perry–had been murdered and two others wounded the night before by another UVa student who opened fire inside a charter bus…Read More
How a Different Kind of Classroom Can Save Our Democracy
We’re about a month into the new school year, and already the grind has set in. In our family, that grind takes on a special significance this year as my ten-year-old son started fifth grade in a different school, with a new set of routines and expectations (did someone say homework?) amid a sea of…Read More
What Are We Really Teaching Our Kids?
I published this article in Inside Higher Ed in September 2020. Even though it addresses the crisis in education brought about by both COVID and the George Floyd tragedy, its message seems highly relevant to our current climate, as well: What or why to teach are more important considerations than how to teach if we are to…Read More
What Do Grades Mean And Why Are They Important To Us?
What Do Grades Mean? With so many changes in the classroom over the last year, it’s understandable that some teachers might not be excited to dive into the debate of how we grade students. For many, it’s a process that they have developed over years of trial and error, and asking them to reexamine their…Read More
As Educators, What Can We Learn from the Attack on the Capitol?
A week after protesters stormed the U.S. Capitol on January 6, the pictures are still hard to fathom. While peaceful demonstrations are rightfully a part of life in Washington, this incident is unlike anything we’ve seen in two centuries. The Senate chamber was breached by people wearing combat gear and carrying zip ties. A Confederate…Read More
This is How Poverty Affects Students and What Teachers Can Do About It
As a professor at the University of Virginia whose student body isn’t especially diverse, I’ve not come face to face with many of the harsh truths about inequities in our educational system. They’ve always been there, of course, including at UVA, but until recently, they were swept under the rug, hidden from my everyday awareness. …Read More
Will Schools Open This Fall? Should They?
The COVID-19 pandemic has lasted longer than many of us expected and has impacted all areas of our lives, including schools. From elementary up to the college level, educators around the country are wondering what school will look like in the fall. While many districts and universities have already decided to stay completely online through…Read More
Students Don’t Need You to be a Perfect Teacher Right Now
In early March, my university administration informed me that I had a week to transition my University of Virginia course Books Behind Bars online. This is a class I’ve been teaching for the past decade, where UVA students meet regularly with incarcerated youth at Bon Air Juvenile Correctional Center in Richmond, Virginia to explore questions…Read More
How to Teach Your Kids When You Have No Idea What You’re Doing
As the COVID-19 threat wreaks havoc on our lives, all of us are coping with the utterly unpredictable and traumatic circumstances as best as we can. For parents, in particular, who have been thrust into the role of a full-time stay-at-home mom and/or dad and full-time teacher, this new world is especially terrifying. John Dewey,…Read More
How I Learned to Get Out of My Own Way as a Teacher
For years as a college teacher, I thought I knew my subject. When it came time to creating the syllabus for my introduction to Russian literature class, I did what most professors do: I decided which novels, stories, and poems I needed to cover in a matter of fourteen weeks, divided the total number by…Read More