Thursday, August 5, 2021

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I Get Why CRT Is So Hard for White People to Digest

I want to start, always and right now, from a place of humility: As a parent and teacher, I don’t know for sure when myths are acceptable, when they should be replaced by facts, and when those facts should be analyzed and second-guessed and positioned within a context and narrative...

How Simone Biles Validated My Son’s Choice To Quit Public School

I've always believed that when the going gets tough, you just keep going. The world suffers no quitters — the immigrant in me chants, “Just keep trying!" Until I learned about Simone Biles and her decision to withdraw from the Olympics.  I always planned on writing an Olympic-themed post. I...

Let’s Stop Talking About Critical Race Theory and Empower Families Instead

Is it just me, or are partisan bullfights over critical race theory (CRT) getting old? Conversations about CRT have become unproductive, dividing education reformers, disrupting communities and distracting from things that matter—like the school choice movement. Therefore, I think it is time we get back to discussing viable and...

I Teach Literacy as a Tool for Liberation

When I was a twenty-nine-and-a-half-year-old middle school English teacher, I bought my first house. I was also single. Normally my singledom isn’t important but then it signaled my financial independence: no dual income to fall back on, no wealthy partner to sign the check. I was fully dependent on...

8 Simple Steps to Unlock the Science of Reading

The term “science of reading” has become a buzzword recently and there is often confusion over what the term means. Sometimes teachers think this refers to a specific curriculum, program, or method, but the term actually refers to a large body of research on reading. It encompasses thousands of...

My Catholic School Made Me a Better Student

The scholarship I received from the Children's Scholarship Fund made it possible for me to attend a Catholic school that not only challenged my educational abilities but also allowed me to continue pursuing my goals. I became a better student because of this experience and was accepted into an excellent...

Here’s Why It’s OK for Kids to Enjoy Some Downtime This Summer

When I began to write this post, I intended for it to be a simple little feature about the benefits of summer breaks on child development. I thought it would be easy to find a multitude of articles touting the need for breaks to rest, restore and regenerate. Instead, I...

Why I Chose Homeschooling Over NYC’s Most Elite High School

I went to one of the top U.S. high schools, Stuyvesant High School in New York City, for two years. In November of my junior year, during the COVID-19 pandemic, I started homeschooling myself—not to escape school, but to return to school.  Back in 2019, when I first arrived at...

I Am Not ‘Woke,’ But Neither Am I Asleep

I didn’t want to write this post. I told myself I would not engage; that I could focus on instructional reform; that these issues could remain separate. But the continued misrepresentation of Dr. King’s words and life, the brazen shouting of unlearned and unread fools entering the space to...

3 Tips for Surviving the Culture Wars as a High School English Teacher

A couple of days ago, I came across a parable that apparently had its roots in ancient India. As the story goes, a group of blind men come across an elephant, which they had never before encountered. They touch the animal in different parts and try to explain to...