After seeing quite a lot of twitter chatter about controversies of grading systems, I became curious to get more insight.  Knowing that Thomas Guskey is known for work related to this field, I decided to read his 2015 book:  “On Your Mark: Challenging the Conventions of Grading and Reporting”. The first line of the book’s introduction is:  “You […]


Common professional development generally result in implementation of new strategies 15% of the time. However, if training is followed with on-going instructional coaching, implementation rates rise to as much as 85% (Cornett and Knight, 2009). We can all identify reasons why traditional “sit and get” PD doesn’t result in long-term change. One common criticism is that PD […]


Being in control of one’s learning requires learning how to learn. This “thinking about thinking” is sometimes referred to as metacognition. Students who do this successfully tend to have a good grasp of what they know and don’t know, and they can plan and regulate their actions accordingly.  These students can also thoughtfully select from developed […]

  While professional development is designed to improve teaching and learning, its ultimate goal is to result in improvement in student learning. However, not all types of professional development yields teacher change and very few can be linked to student outcomes. Whitworth and Chiu (2015) have six suggestions for effective professional development: Characteristics of Effective Professional […]


Professional development can have potential for effective change. Unfortunately, too often the focus of professional development becomes more for credit counting rather than actual learning. Beavers(2009) explains that teachers are often disappointed with the format of the professional development due to poor teaching styles from the presenters and also that the learning subjects seem disconnected from their […]

If you’ve never read a book or watched a youtube video by Sir Ken Robinson, I highly recommend it.  As a teacher, I have always found his vision and message to be inspiring.  (Snippets or video clips would  most likely encourage great conversation in PLC, faculty, department, or back to school meetings.) Here are two very popular […]

I was asked today what I would do differently in my first year of teaching.  My first year teaching is one that I would not want to necessarily do again (!) but one where I did grow a lot – personally and professionally. Below, I share with you some things that stand out to me […]