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Showing posts from May, 2017

The (beginning) Evolution of Testing

As this school year comes to a close, I keep thinking about an area of transformation I want to continue to explore: testing.

Two things have led me to change my approach to testing:
1) The desire for students to have access to resources to assist them on tests.

2) The desire to extend the cooperative atmosphere of my classroom to testing.

I guess the first change to testing began several years ago when I began using interactive notebooks (INBs) with my inclusion Pre-Algebra classes. I've always allowed those students to use their INBs on tests. It has been important to me that they learn how to use available resources to help them with a task. I also found being able to use their INBs greatly increased the confidence of these students.

I've been a little slower to change with my Algebra 1 students. My thoughts? They're advanced kids. They need to be able to take big, scary tests independently and using only what they stored in their own brains.

As other aspects of my cla…

Coming Up for Air

Yep. That's me. For the past two months.

At the end of January, I decided to attempt to renew my National Board Certification this year (my certification expires in 2018, and I did not understand the "two chances to renew" aspect before a January seminar).

OK...Deep breath...I wasn't planning on this, but maybe it will be a good thing.

Things were rocking along until mid-March. Things at home took an unexpected turn. I found out I was Top 16 Finalist for Alabama Teacher of the Year (definitely exciting, but it required an extra classroom video and reflection with little notice). The May 17 deadline for submitting my National Board renewal was getting closer and closer.

Good stress...Bad stress...A whole lot of stress.

There were a few times I wasn't sure how much more I could take. There were a couple of times I was ready to throw in the towel and run far, far away.

This past Wednesday, I submitted my National Board "Profile of Professional Growth" (a …