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November 15, 2012
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News about teaching and education excellence

  Top Story 
  • Teacher explains why he quit giving homework assignments
    Middle-school teacher Mark Barnes gave up on assigning homework. The results, Barnes writes in this blog post, were positive, with many students still choosing to complete academic work -- of their own choosing -- after school. Assigning homework, as he did for years, could be a tradition that needs to be re-evaluated, Barnes suggests, adding that the nightly assignments actually could lead more students to dislike school and learning. SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Education (11/13) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

Poetry Mentor Texts shows you how to leverage students' natural love of poetry to strengthen reading as well as writing. Each chapter features 5 mentor poems that focus on student-friendly forms such as the list poem, acrostic poem, and poem for two voices. Student samples and mini-lessons help translate the ideas into your classroom. Click here now to preview the entire book!
  Focus on Practice 
  • NBCT: Why teachers should not give up on students
    Teachers should continue to focus their attention on all students and not give up on the students who disrupt class, National Board Certified Teacher Anthony Cody writes in this blog post. Cody asserts that ignoring disruptive students likely will backfire as they will do more to gain attention, and he has found that students are aware of teachers' expectations of them and likely are to conform to that expectation. Cody also writes about the need to form a sense of community in the classroom that will be impossible if some students are ostracized. Education Week Teacher/Living in Dialogue blog (11/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Texas teacher helps to gain more students for Latin courses
    A growing number of students at a Texas high school are enrolling in Latin courses -- a trend that some attribute to the passion of teacher Jennifer Jarnagin. While educators say Latin can help students improve their vocabulary -- and SAT scores -- enrollment still lags behind other language courses, including Spanish and German. Jarnagin said Latin is a good choice for students who are shy about speaking because of its focus on the written word. The Dallas Morning News (free content) (11/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Doing Math in Morning Meeting
Boost math learning with these 150 quick and lively math activities to use in morning gatherings or any time during the day. Guessing games, songs, chants, experiments, and more will help students practice skills while sparking their interest in math. K-5. Learn more and order.
  Schools Today 
  • 1,189 districts are represented in Race to the Top competition
    In the latest round of the federal Race to the Top grant competition, 371 applications, representing 1,189 school districts, were received. This most recent round was open to school districts or a consortia of districts, which were required to provide plans to personalize instruction for students. Klint Willert, a superintendent of Marshall Public Schools in Minnesota, said his consortia's application "established a vision of creating an experience where learning is the constant and time is the variable." Education Week/District Dossier blog (11/14) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Report: Charter schools experience surge in enrollment
    Enrollment in charter schools nationwide increased by about 13% between 2010-11 and 2011-12, according to a recent report from the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools. With an increased number of students now enrolled in charter schools nationwide, supporters say their growth shows they are filling a gap in public education. Critics, however, say such schools divert much-needed resources from public schools. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (11/14) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Education Cartoon 
  Developing Leaders 
  • Do teachers need a bar exam?
    American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten and former New York City Schools Chancellor Joel Klein, now with News Corp.'s education division, typically are on opposite sides of education reform issues -- but both have come out in favor of a type of bar exam for aspiring teachers. They say such rigorous exams would ensure the best and brightest join the teaching profession. The Atlantic online (11/14) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Policy News 
  • Calif. district relaxes oversight of student publications
    Officials in a California school district have revised a policy that allows the superintendent to review advertising in student publications after concerns were raised that the practice infringes on First Amendment rights. Under the revised policy, restrictions on commercial advertising in school newspapers and yearbooks have been eliminated. The Sacramento Bee (Calif.) (free registration) (11/15) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

Traditional history instruction doesn't work. "Why Won't You Just Tell Us the Answer?" shows teachers how to move beyond just lectures and textbooks toward a more question-centered approach that fosters historical thinking and leaves a lasting impact. Includes 6 sample American history units. Preview the entire book online!

Independent Reading Inside the Box shows how K-6 students can use a single piece of paper—the "Reading 8-Box"—to strengthen and monitor their comprehension, language, and thinking skills. Filled with student samples, reproducibles, and rubrics. Click here to read Chapter 1 online!

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  NBPTS Update 
  • Congratulations to all 2,792 renewed National Board Certified Teachers
    The renewal application window is now open for NBCTs who achieved in 2003 and 2004.
    Read more. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
NBPTS Homepage  |  About NBPTS  |  Become a Candidate  |  News  |  2011 NBPTS conference  |  For NBCTs

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Keep your fears to yourself but share your courage with others."
--Robert Louis Stevenson,
Scottish novelist, poet and essayist

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