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CODING IS JUST THE NEW SURVEYING

A tip from a wise friend, Thomas Steele-Maley, brought me back to some old school reading the other day: Theodore Sizer’s The Age of the Academies, from 1964. A look at the roots and fruits of the pre-Civil War “academy movement” in the United States, the little […]

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The Original Disruptor: A Cautionary Reflection on DEAD POETS SOCIETY

The tragic death of Robin Williams has moved us all, no matter what our special memories of his oeuvre might be: Mork, Adrian Cronauer, Peter Pan, or even John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt in one of my favorite films, To Wong Foo Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar. For […]

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Twitter as the New Sampler, and Reflections on Tweets of Wisdom

Twitter as the New Sampler, and Reflections on Tweets of Wisdom

In some ways my summer Twitter feed is an extension of the visits to historic sites that my antiquarian family (first with my parents, later with my children) has been making all of my life. On some wall of every Colonial or 19th-century or early 20th-century house […]

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Strategic Thinking and—School Therapy?

Over the past few years I have found myself moving in circles that involve school advancement as much as the teaching-and-learning side of the house. Here I have been made privy to both the anxieties of independent school leaders on matters like enrollment and fiscal sustainability and […]

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A Letter to New Teachers

Note: This post originally appeared here in July of 2011. It has proved to be both popular and durable, and as the 2014-15 2015-16 school year approaches, it seems appropriate to re-post it—PG If it hasn’t already, within a very few weeks school will be starting, and […]

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Paying It Forward: Further Thoughts on Why We (or at least some of us may) Teach

In my last post I suggested that a powerful motivation for some teachers seems to have been a desire to “correct” the teaching that they themselves experienced. I probably implied, without meaning to, that this is a sole impetus for those “restitutional” teachers, as if they were […]

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Restitutional Teaching: Another Thought On Why We (or at least some of us may) Teach

I have had some wonderful teachers in my life—a solid bunch in my public elementary school and another group in my independent junior high–high school. They shaped and influenced my life in ways I wish I could still tell them about; I’ve managed to get to the […]

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A Whole-Child Education for Every Child: The Grand Unifying Theory of Education

I am not a huge fan of posts that start with a number and proceed to a command: “83 Things You Must Do To Be The Teacher You Want to Be”; “Thirteen C’s Your School Can’t Survive Without.” In general I find these overwhelming, dispiriting, and ultimately […]

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Getting Something Out of Snow Days (and not the way you think)

The phone rang at 5:22 this morning, and she would have slept through it. But I answered and handed it to my spouse so that she could receive the news that she could go back to sleep. School was closed. This has been a common scenario this […]

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Profit and Profiteering in Education

Lately I was gently (and privately) chided for expressing skepticism about the role of business enterprises—the people who sell us our computers, our textbooks, our desks, our apps, our standardized tests, our paper towels, and our trays of ravioli—in schools. Can’t live without ’em. Gotta have ’em. […]

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