Practicing What You Preach: Learning What You Teach

Summer is the perfect time for me to try out some of the nonsense I spew all year long.  Okay, not nonsense. Well thought-out, research-backed, pedagogically sound, veteran tested, best practices stuff.  But honestly, stuff that sometimes makes me feel like I’m just a carnival barker. I’m talking about the practice-what-you-preach stuff.  Things I say a million times over the course of a school year, … Continue reading Practicing What You Preach: Learning What You Teach

Understanding School Choice

By Doreen Fryling, Ed.D. School choice sounds like a great idea. In theory, parents could pick out the best school that suits their child’s learning needs and interests. Schools would compete with each other to bring the very best to their student populations so as to retain and recruit. Innovation would follow. Failing schools would disappear. Kids would be happy. Parents would be happy. Schools would be happy places. But … Continue reading Understanding School Choice

Changing the Narrative in Arts Education

Remarks read at the 2016 New York State School Superintendents’ Conference: On behalf of the Rockville Centre Schools community, the singers and I come before you as advocates for music education.  And we ask you to consider a bold change in the narrative regarding arts education.  Over the two decades of my teaching career, I have been part of many advocacy campaigns that seek to save … Continue reading Changing the Narrative in Arts Education

The Other 98% of the Time…

The Obama Administration recently issued support for limiting testing time for students to 2% of their school year.  Critics have already pointed out that this is more testing time than many students already face. While I appreciate the administration showing concern for students who sit for 9 hours of testing in only a few days, I think most people are still missing the real problem … Continue reading The Other 98% of the Time…

Don’t tell them they can’t.

Want your students to excel? Don’t tell them they can’t. Why not tell them they can? You’d be surprised what students can do. Sometimes it just takes you getting out of the way. Provide curricular opportunities that are open-ended in their design instead of curriculum that only has correct and incorrect answers. Allow ALL students chances to demonstrate mastery, creativity, and ownership of their work. … Continue reading Don’t tell them they can’t.