∆ Jackson

Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap

Archives › motivation

May 20 2014

Don’t Give Up

Today wan’t perfect.  I had to throw out two students.  But it was a great day simply because I have amazing students.  I sometimes complain.  I sometimes post something terrible that happened at work on facebook to make light of the situation or entertain my loved ones.  But really that doesn’t accurately represent how very much I…

read more »

Today, I found out that for one of my students, if he can hang on two and half more years, he will be the first in his family to graduate high school.  Not the first to graduate college, not even the first to go to college, but the first to graduate high school. The news…

read more »
Sep 26 2013

The Power of a Piece of Paper

This week, I saw students who were truly proud of themselves because of a piece of paper. They analyzed their data, revised their hypothesis about their planes, and re-built them in hopes of their new designs flying further.  We ran a final test and declared the “winner”. The morning of our final tests I came…

read more »
Aug 13 2013

And, we’re back!

School is back in session and I have to tell you, I am feeling excited about this year.  Let’s run over a quick list of what has been completely awesome: 1. The Science Hall.  We are incredible.  We are a superb team.  And you don’t have to just take my word for it!  I have…

read more »
Aug 02 2013


I have been hard at work this week getting my classroom and my classroom culture student-ready!  And because buying food is more important than buying fancy posters, AND because I was, after all, a design major, I collected images of posters I liked on my “I love to teach” Pinterest board.  And then I bought…

read more »
May 13 2013

Life Lessons in Science Class

After a disappointing past couple weeks, my first group of final exams are in (Seniors take their exams a week earlier than everyone else) and as the last question on both my Physics and Physical Science exams, I asked the students this: Write at least three paragraphs describing what you think is the most IMPORTANT…

read more »
May 02 2013


This week I was highly disappointed in my students.  And of course, Teach for America has trained me to think this is my fault and I have not done enough.  I didn’t build strong enough relationships, I did not create a classroom vision my students bought into, my classroom culture was not strong enough, I…

read more »

So, driving home from work today I had a really sad realization. With the exception of a few of my students, I realized today that nearly none of my students will be ready for college when they graduate high school. And I say this not because I don’t believe in my students, but because even…

read more »
Jan 14 2013

The teacher I imagined I would be…

I love writing blog posts when I feel very happy and positive.  And right now, I really feel genuinely happy. : ) **Side note: The only thing really getting me down is this rain and COLD.  And let me tell you, I can pinpoint the exact second it became cold in Jackson, MS.  I was…

read more »

First.  Parent teacher conferences.  To quote one teacher in my hall, “It’s like Christmas!” Seriously, though.  You should be required to meet your student’s teachers before your child is allowed to attend school.  It’s such a breath of fresh air to hear that, yes, of course this student’s mother/father/auntie/grandmother/etc want him/her to do well!  And…

read more »
Aug 20 2012

Having good days.

Our principal sends us an inspirational “Quote of the Day” every morning and today’s really stood out to me: ———- You have to come to the place where you can say, “I don’t have to have my way to have a good day.  My plans don’t have to work out for me to be happy.  Everybody doesn’t…

read more »
Jul 01 2012

Levels of Motivation

Here are my levels of motivation, ranked from lowest (1-4: I really, really have no motivation to do these things) to highest (7-10: I would enjoy doing these things) with 5 & 6 being things I would do to avoid doing 1-4 : 1. writing my Thursday lesson plan about how organisms in different levels…

read more »