Category Archives: Teach For America

Teach For America is the national corps of outstanding recent college graduates of all academic majors who commit two years to teach in urban and rural public schools and become leaders in the effort to expand educational opportunity.

Mammas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to be Teachers

A rising superstar in education is Rutgers student Stephanie Rivera, who I first wrote about last year.  Stephanie just published a very compelling blog post called To All The Teachers Telling Us To Not Go Into Teaching, Stop.  In response … Continue reading

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Math topics that need to be put out of their misery. Part 2: Absolute value

The old math standards, say common core defenders, were “a mile wide and an inch deep.”  I’m inclined to agree with this.  Too many topics and too little time led to teachers having no choice but to teach many topics … Continue reading

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Math topics that need to be put out of their misery. Part 1: Writing algebraic expressions

Last month I wrote a post called ‘The Death of math’ which got a lot of attention as I described how I’d improve math teaching in this country by significantly reducing the number of topics taught and by making math … Continue reading

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10 PRINT “CODING IS OVERRATED”                       20 GOTO 10

I remember when I taught in Houston back in the early 1990s and felt it was a crime that my school did not offer any real computer programming course.  The best they had was something called ‘computer applications’ where students … Continue reading

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Please Support Spencer Smith’s Recovery

This past summer I befriended a new TFA corps member named Spencer Smith.  For five months I followed his journey from his teacher training to his experiences in his Detroit classroom.  Sometimes I’d needle him about being in TFA, but … Continue reading

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My first year, re-evaluated

A lot of what has motivated me throughout the past twenty-one years has been the desire to redeem myself for what I considered to be an unacceptable first year of teaching sixth grade math during the 1991-1992 school year at … Continue reading

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My Daughter’s Kindergarten Common Core Math Workbook

The Common Core has hit home for me, literally.  I received from my daughter’s school a kindergarten common core workbook, and, as you might imagine, I have ‘issues’ with it. My daughter’s school, like most schools, is having a budget … Continue reading

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Join me and Roxanna Elden on Tuesday for a live Spreecast!

A few times a year I host a live internet ‘talk show’ which is a lot of fun.  Most of the old shows were erased by a server crash, but the two I did over the summer episode 5 and … Continue reading

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My advice to TFA staffers: Quit For America

The organization of TFA is a bit like a pyramid scheme.  There are a bunch of VPs who are making a lot of money for a non-profit, certainly six figures.  Then there are the majority of staffers, people who work … Continue reading

Posted in Teach For America, tfa rants | 25 Comments

My review of ‘Test and Punish’

If ‘Reign of Error’ were to meet ‘The DaVinci Code’ the result would John Kuhn’s ‘Test-and-Punish: How the Texas Education Model Gave America Accountability Without Equity’.   Kuhn is the superintendent of the Perrin-Whitt school district in Texas.  I first learned … Continue reading

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