professional development

There’s Comfort In Being Wrong

Teacher in a panic: It can’t be wrong. Me, softly: Why not? Teacher: Because… if it’s wrong and I’ve been doing it… we’ve ALL been doing it for years, then what does that mean for the kids? Me: I know. It’s scary. I’ve had that same thought, but another teacher said to me, “What about the kids we haven’t had yet?” As a literacy coach, I’ve grown accustomed to having

Teachers Won’t Embrace Research Until It Embraces Them

I understand why advocates, researchers, and policymakers who feel the urgency of our literacy crisis are frustrated when teachers don’t embrace reading science. But my entry into the world of reading research was difficult, and while I take pride in my determination to learn, I understand why other teachers might be deterred. If we want teachers to apply research, it may be helpful to think about why they aren’t. I’ll

Open Letter: lives depend on literacy; lives depend on us

Teachers are lauded for our martyrdom- “other professions make money, but teachers make a difference”- and frequently bashed , so rarely will we publicly voice our self-doubt. When we’re driving home after a hard day or lying awake at night, we may think about students who struggled. Despite (or perhaps because of) our tireless efforts, we wonder, years after they leave us, “Was there something more I could have done?”