17 Notes

Two years ago, the Chicago Public Schools budgeted for 454 librarians. Last year, the budget called for 313 librarians, and now that number is down to 254.

With educators facing tough financial choices, having a full-time librarian is becoming something of a luxury in Chicago’s more than 600 public schools.


BBB is being completely disingenuous with her statement that the “[hiring] pool is diminished”. If it seems like there aren’t enough interested librarians it’s because 1. CPS has a complicated and stupid hiring process and it’s not easy to get into the “Teacher Quality Pool” and 2. The existing school librarians were either pushed out or reassigned to classroom instruction. 

The sad fact is that with CPS’ per-pupil budgeting, anything considered “nonessential” is probably not going to get funded and unlike PE or Art (both of which I completely and totally support for all students), there are no mandated set of required hours for Library instruction. 

72 Notes

Fall Semester Buddies!

During the course of this semester, you will be asked to mail 1-2 cards, notes of encouragement etc.   Actual gift items are up to you, but please know that we all know money is tight and it is unlikely that you will receive a gift (so don’t feel like you have to).  You are also welcome to make something for your buddy.  

Whether you reveal yourself right away or not, is up to you.  I think it is more fun to wait until the end.

You may put notes of encouragement in their ask box, send fan mail, or spend a little extra time thinking of solutions to problems they may face.

International teachers are welcome.  So are pre-service teachers / student teachers.

You must have an active tumblr that has been on tumblr for over a month in order to participate.

Tumblr, Girlwithalessonplan, and I are not liable for any lost items, or other problems that occur due to this program.  You submit your address and agree to participate at your own risk.

Please answer the survey questions and send them to positivelypt (at) gmail (dot) com

*Note:  I am unable to reassign buddies mid-round.  You get who you get, so please DO NOT sign up if there’s a chance you won’t be able to follow through on your end of the bargain.  This is a short round, so it is easier for some to participate.  For those that travel a lot — maybe not so much.

Sign ups end 9/3/2014

  1. Tumblr name: 
  2. Address to mail items:
  3. Are you willing to mail to a participant outside of the U.S.:  
  4. Grade Level: 
  5. Subject Taught: 
  6. Favorite Color: 
  7. Favorite Candy: 
  8. Favorite Food: 
  9. When I want to treat myself, I 
  10. Interests outside of teaching: 
  11. Guilty Pleasure: 
  12. Anything else you want your buddy to know?
  13. T-shirt size:
  14. Favorite Office Supply:
  15. Favorite books:
  16. Do you belong to any fandoms?
  17. Please list any buddies you have already had so that I do not have to go searching through e-mails for that information. 

40 Notes




Challenge your students to enter this amazing contest.  Help end childhood hunger in the U.S. Teens can make a difference.  $5,000 in prizes. http://owl.li/AQ4zH

73 Notes

8/24 and 8/25 are Education Dare Days!

When an Education Dare Day is announced from this blog:

  1. Reblog the announcement!
  2. Ask one question related to education on your tumblr for your followers to answer.  Post the responses in one single post later.
  3. Ask at LEAST 2 of the tumblrs in the #education community a question in their ask box. It does not have to be related to education.

Please tag your posts as "education dare day" and/or "EDD.” 

You do not need to be a teacher to participate.

The purpose is to help the education community get to know each other, as well as provide opportunities to learn from each other.  

I dare you to reach out to someone you don’t know very well or is new to tumblr/#education!

26 Notes

Ferguson Syllabus


@DrMChatelain began tweeting texts for #FergusonSyllabus. Many others joined with recommendations of texts as well as questions to pose to students at all levels from K-professional/grad schools. List being updated daily list being updated. Please note this is an incomplete list at the moment.

29 Notes


Teacher blogs (or parents or humans who interact with small humans or anyone who has an opinion on this),

I know the school year has already started or is about to start for most of us. How are you talking to you kids about Michael Brown, race, police violence, etc? Art teachers, how are you or how can we work this into our lessons?

I teach PK-5th and while some may say they’re too young, our kids know the battles being fought in their neighborhoods and, even if they can’t yet put it into words, they feel the injustice. They know the discrepancy between what should be for them and what is. I can’t sit by and let “them” suffer, I want my kids to know that I am fighting with them and that they are fighting together to eradicate this injustice.

So what have you done in your classroom?
What are you planning to do?
What do you wish you could do?
What would you do if you taught older kids? Younger kids? Had kids?

121 Notes

"It’s Just Good Teaching" - My case for Culturally Responsive Teaching


Gloria Ladson-Billings’ article advocating for Culturally Responsive Education changed me as a teacher. 

My first year teaching in Detroit was back in 2010. I was fresh out of college and eager to make a difference. I lived by Mandela’s quote, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” I was very successful by my standards and the standards of those above me. But that was my problem. I was successful in contributing to and reinforcing the systemic, institutionalized oppression of my students because I was teaching the way I was taught.

I had received a culturally responsive education growing up—the dominate, white, Euro-centric culture, that is. That was also predominately how I learned to teach—from white professors teaching other white students that would go on to teach mostly white students.  But I didn’t teach white students.

So there I was, in Detroit as a non-native, young, white male. “Imparting” my wisdom and guidance on students that I never took the time to really get to know. Sure my students loved me. They grew a ton in reading and writing, but when it came to empowering their cultural competence and critical consciousness, I failed.

I did everything I thought I was supposed to do: I set the vision and goals for my classroom without honestly incorporating the personal vision and goals of my students, their families, and community. Students looked at me as having the voice, values, knowledge, and ideas that were most valuable. And I superficially incorporated other cultures into the classroom.

But then I read this article. For the last three years I’ve tried to shift from simply being a Teacher as a Technician to a Teacher as a true Agent of Change. Here’s what I mean:




I finally feel like I’m starting to be the teacher my students need. It’s a long process, one that would be ignorant of me to think I’ll ever complete. If your an educator from privilege teaching students that don’t share your identity, we are called to reach across lines of difference and using this framework is a great place to start. 

53 Notes

redditgifts for the Teachers 2014 - redditgifts


It is here everybody!

For those of you not in the know, you sign up, someone buys you stuff you say you need. You write a little thank you note and post a picture of the stuff. Repeat at the beginning of next year.


22 Notes

Possible #Education Idea

I learn so much from Tumblr, twitter, and well just the internet as a whole that helps me to be a better teacher.  

However, I still think it is important to stay up on the latest research / literature on my field.  I find that hard at times during the school year.

I was wondering if anyone would be interested in reading my short summaries of articles I do read (with citation!) and also be willing to write some on the ones they read.   It could be deep research, or more lesson idea based like the articles in Teaching Young Children.  This sounds similar to a college assignment, but you’re right it is.   I just more passionate about reading these than when I wasn’t in the field.

Team Teachers could either reblog your post if you let us know you’ve posted about an article you’ve read, or you could submit it.

Please use ask, fan mail, or e-mail me at positivelypt@gmail.com and let me know what you think.

47 Notes

Back to School #Education Exchange!


Many of you showed interested in my back to school exchange idea, so here’s the official post!

You will send a one time back to school gift to an assigned person by September 15th.  You should also receive a one time back to school gift from an assigned person by that time, but there’s not really anything I can do if people decide to suck and not send things.  I’m not going to set a price, but I am planning on spending about $15-20.

If you would like to participate, please email me (mathgirl2013@gmail.com) with the subject line “Back to School” and fill out the questionnaire below.  I would like to start assigning people on Monday, so please email me by Sunday, August 3!

  1. Tumblr Blog URL:
  2. Your Email Address:
  3. Your Mailing Address:
  4. Your Job: (Are you a teacher, a student teacher, something else?  What do you teach?  Ex: Mine would be second year high school math teacher.)
  5. Favorite Snack:
  6. Favorite Candy:
  7. Favorite Office Supply:
  8. Favorite Color:
  9. Amazon Wishlist (if you have one):
  10. Would you prefer something for your classroom/school, your house, your wardrobe, or your stomach?: 
  11. Anything else?:

Boost!  Love all these new ideas and more people helping to grow #education.