How I Build Community with ‘Smiles and Frowns’

by | 5.16.19

I wanted a daily way to check in with kids, so I started a practice called ‘smiles and frowns.’ I started off this year telling kids, ‘There’s nothing more important than the humans in the room, so we start with the humans in the room.’

How I Let Students Lead

by | 4.9.19

Students often love to share their ideas aloud. There was a time when I didn’t value this enthusiasm for engaging. I saw it as a trait to tamper – something that stood in the way of getting information to them. Then I realized their willingness to speak was one of their greatest assets. And in order to reach them, I needed to build upon their passion for discussion.

I Found My Voice at ECET2

by | 4.9.19

Now, my professional learning network is immense, and I keep up with a lot of the folks I’ve met through the convenings. We meet virtually. We go to other edu-events and invite one another. We meet up socially. We even have a playlist of songs we listen to when we get back together. It’s a family.

3 Creative Ways to Build Empathy in the Classroom

by | 4.4.19

I am known as a warrior of social-emotional learning. I always say my teaching puts SEL first – and empathy is a critical component. People ask me all the time how I build empathy in the classroom. The answer is one day at a time, one experience at a time, with great intention, focus and practice.

Supporting Students in Managing Their Anxieties

by | 3.29.19

I used to be a teacher who didn’t fully understand when students told me about their stress levels. Students would say, “I’m so stressed out about ____,”  (fill in the blank with just about anything!) and I’d respond, “Well, just make sure you study!” or “Make sure you take care of yourself.” I didn’t perceive anything worrisome – I just thought, “A little stress is normal, and they’ll get over it.”


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