Category Archives: Uncategorized

Getting SCHOOLED with Anne Lutz Fernandez and Catherine Lutz

A lot of people talk about teachers but not many talk to teachers.  Authors Anne Lutz Fernandez and Catherine Lutz set out to address that shortfall in Schooled:  Ordinary, Extraordinary Teaching in an Age of Change (Teachers College Press, 2015).  … Continue reading

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Review: GO SET A WATCHMAN by Harper Lee

Defense attorney Atticus Finch from To Kill a Mockingbird, one of my literary heroes, now finds himself in need of a defense. He is accused of being a racist based on the portrayal of Atticus Finch in Harper Lee’s newly … Continue reading

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How Do We Teach Style in Research Writing?

“And this needs to be in MLA format.” Those of us who teach in the humanities frequently ask our students to use MLA format when writing research documentation. Because a lot of research writing tends to come through English classes, … Continue reading

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My Illinois State Board of Education Adventure

In June, 2014 I made two moves in my professional life almost simultaneously: I retired as a high school teacher, and I renewed my K-12 Illinois teaching license. Although that may seem paradoxical, I was preserving my options in case … Continue reading

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Top Ten Summer Reads for #APLit Students

Advanced Placement Literature students and their teachers know that next May they will address a prompt that asks test-takers to discuss a literary work and how it relates to the prompt. The prompt will be accompanied by a list of … Continue reading

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What a Night!: Fremd High School’s #WriteNite

Kudos to Fremd High School for holding its first Write Nite last night as a fund-raiser for their mighty Writers Week program. (Disclaimer: Although I was an organizer for Fremd’s Writers Week for many years, my only involvement in Write … Continue reading

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The Mariner and Me:  Telling Our Stories to Help Students (and Ourselves) Reflect

Students are usually interested in developing a résumé: leadership positions, extra-curricular activities, service projects, etc. They carefully choose and articulate each crumb of success and arrange them so that they will present the best possible version of themselves. But what … Continue reading

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Doing a Scary Thing

This blog post is going to be a little different. It’s mostly just for me. A revelation that came to me from Gretchen Rubin’s Better than Before, a book about habits, is that we form, maintain, and break habits in … Continue reading

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A Dozen Cool Ways to Use Periscope in Your Class

Periscope is a fairly new app (and web site) connected to Twitter. The basic idea is that a user can broadcast from anywhere any time with a device as simple as a smart phone. (In fact, I’m broadcasting my writing … Continue reading

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Hello and Goodbye: Introductions and Conclusions

Student question: “Does this paper need an introduction?” My answer: “I think that would be polite. Do you agree?” Quizzical looks follow. What does politeness have to do with writing an introduction? Then I explain that an introduction is really … Continue reading

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