Teach Houston

Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
Nov 22 2013

“Thank you for believing in me.”

I did it. I made it to Thanksgiving Break. I will not be back at school for nine days. As I packed up today, after the kids left, I couldn’t help but tear up in my empty classroom. I have grown so much. I have come so far. My world is so different now.  I…

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Nov 18 2013

the “Catch an Immigrant” game

Rarely do I post when I’m angry; this is an exception I’m willing to make. I’m sure many of you by now have heard of the deplorable, racist, bigoted “game” hosted by the Young Conservatives group at the University of Texas at Austin on Wednesday. Here’s a brief synopsis from the group themselves: “YCT will…

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I am a member of two worlds. The teacher world and the non-teacher world. In teacher world, for the most part, faith in students is taken for granted. I am told, student actions come from teacher actions. Student mindsets come from teacher mindsets. To what extent I truly, deeply believe this is for another post.…

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Nov 09 2013

November blues.

I’ll be honest – I’ve been really struggling, this first week of November. I think I am finally hitting Teacher October but just one month delayed. My kids came off a week of review and a week of testing so it’s been hard for everyone to get back into the swing of actual learning &…

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This was said by a student today, as we delved right into the heart of one of this unit’s Essential Questions. What does it mean to grow up? What happens if/when you realize your views are different from those of your parents? Can you grow and stay the same at the same time?  To start…

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Oct 28 2013


Knee-deep in a full week of testing, I am grateful that my kids finished their English exams today, meaning the pressure has been taken off (for the rest of this week at least). We got our preliminary scores back already. Both my co-planner and I beat the district average for the multiple choice section –…

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Oct 23 2013

the end of October is approaching…

…and with it, the lure of Thanksgiving and a respite from teacher life burns brighter. I’ve really been feeling October these past few days. not quite sure why. What set me over the edge tonight was an email full of action items and things that need to get done; of course, my progress on these…

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Oct 15 2013

do kids need to enter a room silently?

I’m throwing this question out there and I want your feedback. Here’s the scenario: Every day, my kids line up outside my room on the crowded deck (my school has no buildings, as I’ve discussed) and patiently wait to be let in. I open the door, greet them with a smile and some brief conversation,…

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Oct 10 2013

October Sky

“Black October.” “Sucktober.” “Awfultober.” I hear these phrases all around me, and even TFA is passive-aggressively sending me emails teaching me how to distinguish between the “normal October blues,” disillusionment, and depression. I know that many people do deal with these issues, and that they are completely subjected to the difficulties of dealing with administration,…

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Sep 30 2013

settling in

It’s this time of year that always gets to me, when fall, when there’s just the slightest bit of crisp in the air. Let’s be real here. This is Houston. We don’t have seasons, really, but I grew up in Kansas and now I latch onto the slightest little bit of fall I can possibly…

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Journeys, challenges, & writings of a first-year teacher.

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