Letter from the Editor: Are You Teaching Students to Use Their “Tools”?

Mom and my sister--both teachers--find it funny that I ended up working for a website called Teach.com. “You just couldn’t escape,” my mom likes to laugh. A love of sharing information is in our blood. But I try to do more listening than talking around my mom. When she talks, I always learn something.

While waiting for the fireworks to start on Independence Day this year, my mom and I were discussing, of all things, word problems. My mom complained that her students hated them, which never made much sense to her.

“Saying that you like fractions or that you like algebra, but you don’t like word problems... that's basically saying you like having a box full of tools, but you don't like fixing anything with them.”

My mom re…

From Teacher to Tech-Savvy Principal: 8 Questions with Jeff Herb

8 QUESTIONS is a series of interviews with teachers who have effectively transitioned their classroom skills into new and exciting careers in the field of education. We at Teach.com believe that teaching is a rigorous and diverse classroom in and of itself; the skills learned “in the trenches” can translate into an exciting portfolio of professional options. From education tech to consulting, the only “X factor” is where you want to go — our interviews hope to shine a light on the steps it takes to get there.

 

1. What's your name, location and current career path?

Teach100 Mentors on School Year Wrap-Up

Congratulations teachers and administrators on surviving another school year!

With the end of the year drawing nigh, we asked our Teach100 Mentors what their most--and least--favorite parts of the school-year wrap up are.

Managing restless students, final grades/report cards/paperwork, and year end assessments top the list of "most dreaded end-of-year tasks," but our survey-takers are also looking forward to some much-needed time to do some learning themselves.

 

To be exact, 68% of our survey responders are planning on reading a job-related book this summer, 58% will attend a job-related conference, and 32% are going to take a class of their own this summer. Teach100 Mentors are a very dedicated bunch! Of course, 11% report that they'll still be working (womp womp), while anothe…

Teach100 Mentors on Required Mental Health Training for Educators

We asked our Teach100 Mentors in a survey if they'd ever had to deal with a mental health issue on the job, and startlingly, every responder answered "Yes."

With that in mind, it's easy to understand the logic behind a new bill passed in Montana recommending school employees (not just teachers) receive mental health and/or suicide awareness training.

This legislation is, for now, just in Montana, but similar laws already exist for teachers in Tennessee and other states, requiring the training in order for teachers to stay licensed. And it's no wonder there's concern around this issue: nearly all responders to our survey reported encountering…

From Teacher to School Counselor: 8 Questions With Andrea Burston

8 QUESTIONS is a new series of interviews with teachers who have effectively transitioned their classroom skills into new and exciting careers in the field of education. We at Teach.com believe that teaching is a rigorous and diverse classroom in and of itself; the skills learned “in the trenches” can translate into an exciting portfolio of professional options. From education tech to consulting, the only “X factor” is where you want to go — our interviews hope to shine a light on the steps it takes to get there.


Finding Your Niche: Teach100 Mentors Talk Transitions

Most teachers have asked their students at one point, "What do you want to be when you grow up?" But do they ever ask themselves the same question?

The reality for most of those working in education is that finding your niche--your subject, grade level, specialty, etc--is a gradual process. That's probably why most of our Teach100 mentors (58% of those who took our most recent survey) reported having worked four or more jobs in education. Sometimes it takes some trial and error to discover what you like, what you're good at, and what type of environment you want to do your job in.

 

 

With that in mind, we asked our Teach100 Mentors