multilingual · vocabulary

Bringing Down Students’ Affective Filter

March seemed like it was never-ending. I glanced at my planner last week and realized one whole week left in March. For those that share my sentiment, breathe, we made it, and tomorrow is April. This month, I've been assessing our multilingual learners. It is called the Summative English Language Assessments for California (ELPAC) in… Continue reading Bringing Down Students’ Affective Filter

literary essay

Essay Writing, Bootcamp Style

Several years ago, I would drive past my local park and see a group of people that met weekly for an all-body Bootcamp. Inspired by their dedication to fitness, I tried it out for myself.  On the first day, I was uncoordinated and moved much slower than the other members. When the coach said, "step… Continue reading Essay Writing, Bootcamp Style

gratitude · journaling

One Good Thing

Recently, my 11-year-old daughter was cleaning out her dresser drawer. She came across a small blue journal from second grade and ran into my bedroom as I folded the laundry. "Look, Mom! This is my "One Good Thing" journal from Ms. Hale's class." The laundry could wait; we had some reminiscing to do. Some of… Continue reading One Good Thing

interactive writing · tcrwp · writing about reading

Writing About Reading

Writing about Reading When I am learning anything new, I take more than the average time to understand the new concept to its fidelity. Recently, a student’s mom gave me a cutting of a plumeria plant. She explained that I would need to place it in a pot with cactus soil and water it vigorously… Continue reading Writing About Reading

authentic writing · memories · poetry · professional development · Teachers College

I Remember

What is a memory? What makes a moment memorable? Were they moments of utter joy and warmth? Or was there embitterment, stress, and even trauma that made it special? For me, the 2020-2021 school year had many moments that were both. As much as I would like to move forward from last year, those memories… Continue reading I Remember

informational writing · writer identity · writing workshop

Identity Webs to Generate Ideas for Information Writing

When it comes to generating ideas for information writing, my experience has been that some students freeze. There are two things I have learned about why this occurs.

back to school · Reflections and Shifts As We Move Forward Blog Series · writing workshop

Putting Social Emotional Learning in All We Do: Reflections and Shifts Moving Forward

The research is pretty detailed and consistent that the relationship between teacher and student matters a great deal. It affects their sense of belonging, their relationships with peers, and affects their learning.

content-area writing · vocabulary

Developing Students’ Content Vocabulary

The Cognitive Content Dictionary (CCD) was first introduced to me in my tier 1 Project Guided Language Acquisition Design training. It is both linguistically and culturally responsive and, above all, brings joy into the classroom.

EAL · multilingual · summarization

Supporting English Language Learners with Summary Writing

When I first started teaching and heard experienced teachers converse using acronyms related to English Language Development, I wondered if I would be able to memorize these acronyms as freely as they had. Twenty years later, I think I have a grasp on several of them. Here’s a few, try it out and see if… Continue reading Supporting English Language Learners with Summary Writing

writing workshop

Virtual Coaching Moves

Think about the best coaches you have had or know. On Super Bowl Sunday, a hologram of Vince Lombardi appeared at the beginning of the game. In our home, he is considered one of the best coaches in NFL history. We started to unpack what qualities made him exceptional. We came to the top three… Continue reading Virtual Coaching Moves

writing workshop

Getting Ready for Literary Essay

Immersion Work I first learned about immersion work from a former staff developer at the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project, Annie Taranto. Annie led a 3-day institute on the Coaching of Writing at the Ovington School in Brooklyn, New York. One of the most impactful methods I learned that week was immersion. I remember… Continue reading Getting Ready for Literary Essay