• Feedback With a Purpose

    I spent about two hours writing feedback to my students on their paragraph writing. The next day in class I provided time for them to review the feedback, rewrite their paragraphs and resubmit their work for grading. When I went home that night to look over their work I saw minimal improvements. My students don’t realize how much of my personal time goes to supporting them. I refuse to have my time wasted so I created this Student Reflection For Paragraph Writing Form I’ll update you on it’s effectiveness by the end of this week.

  • It’s About Time I Wake Up

    I remember that time I quit. I just quit. I wrote my two weeks notice and just quit. I was over being underpaid at my job and although I had no backup plan, I said fuck it. This was the job of my dreams, or so I thought. It turned out to be a toxic environment that if you weren’t aware of this you would get sucked in too. I was 25 and my mom passed away just a few months earlier so having a job wasn’t an option for me; I needed it. My boyfriend at the time did not agree with my decision to leave my job, so…

  • They Stopped Me

    They stopped me. I walked into my colleagues office first thing in the morning just to role play. It’s crazy how I’m 7 years into my profession and I have to role play because as a black woman from the South Bronx, I may come across as too forward, ghetto or as the ANGRY BLACK woman. The whole situation kept me up last night; I was thinking about the comment my principal said to one of my students and I just couldn’t let up on it. I had to speak up. I had to speak up for MY people. I formulated a question to initiate the conversation “what did you…

  • You lost me at ivy league isn’t for everyone

    I stayed late tonight to assist with our open house. Families had not arrived yet so I engaged in conversation with my colleagues. I noticed one of my students helping to place the books back on the bookshelf and I invited her to join our conversation. I spoke of how hard this student works and how motivated and dedicated she was in and out of school. I admit she inspires me and this is the reason she is student of the month in my class. As we discussed her goals for her future and the extracurricular activities she is working through to get her there, we applauded her. There are…

  • I’m Human.

    I feel like such a hypocrite as I put together the workshop on suicide prevention for my nonprofit. I was asked before whether or not I had thoughts of suicide. Each time I was asked this my answer was always “no” After watching a Ted Talk done by someone who attempted suicide I realized I shouldn’t be ashamed of my truth. That’s what I was ashamed. I remember in college when I was feeling helpless I sought a counselor. I admitted to a friend why I was seeing a counselor, and immediately he expressed how bad he felt, and each day he made sure to check in with me. I…

  • My Weekend of Silence

    There is this secret place I go to every year to do a mental reset. I know it’s selfish of me to write about a place that’s a secret, right? I’ve shared its location with a few people I thought would benefit from it. Have they gone? Of course not. I arrived at the retreat Friday evening with my curriculum guide and my book club novel. I had planned for this to be a weekend to get all of my work done in silence. I was mistaken. During orientation, the sister told us that we should not read and refrain from using our phones. She explained that reading would take our…

  • International Literacy Day

    “Once you learn to read, you will forever be free.” – Frederick Douglass. I can’t imagine my life without being able to read. It’s an escape, it’s a high and most importantly my freedom. Every teacher no matter the subject is responsible for including literacy in their daily lessons. It’s up to us to change the world. #internationalliteracyday #education #internationalauthors

  • Literacy in History

    He asked me if I was teaching ELA this year. I had been working on my bulletin board for the start of my year. It included the book covers of historical text. Although it was an odd question from a teacher, I was happy to get my message across. There is literacy in history! So many people in our community believe reading should remain solely in the English Langauge Arts classrooms. I beg to differ, which is why I am building a new library to support scholars. I taught Global History seven years ago at another school and I don’t have the resources that I would like to use. My students…