Making Parents Proud – Ep. #007

A happy parent can tell you so much more than any evaluation from an administrator.  Now that I am out of the classroom, I can say that without having to worry that putting my parents’ happiness above all else can somehow harm my job status. Where I taught in Oklahoma City, we used the Marzano’s Instructional Strategies as a metric for our teachers’ success, and NOWHERE in the Marzano’s Evaluation do they ask parents — “Are you happy with the job the teacher is doing?” Actually, nowhere do they ask parents anything.  This is bonkers, backwards, and all sorts of bad. And … Read More

Class Field Trip to Beauty & the Beast – Ep. #006

A field trip to the movies can actually be one of the most effective ways to spend your time. If that sounds counter-intuitive or maybe just flat-out wrong, then you may be surprised by what you hear in this episode of the Punk Rock Preschool podcast. If you want to connect with your students on a more personal level, a field trip to Beauty and the Beast may be the perfect way to do so. Kids love it when you share stories about your childhood! For one, they get a real kick imagining you as a kid — who knows what … Read More

5 Secrets to Building FOMO for your Classroom – Episode #005

What’s more important? Going over the same calendar and weather routine every single day (and boring kids half-to-death) OR changing things up and bringing something fresh and new to school each morning? Would you rather fill your day with monotonous routines or would you rather light up your students’ worlds with the best classroom on the planet? Bring enthusiasm and excitement into your classroom every day.  Let’s make school the most exciting place in the world! Think of all the things that captured your imagination growing up. What made you jump out of bed in the morning? What ideas or topics made your mind race … Read More

21st Century Skills for Success – Episode #004

Did your education prepare you for life in the 21st century? If I asked you to come up with a list of “things I didn’t learn in school,” I bet you’d have no problem running off a number of essential life-skills you had to learn on your own. Meanwhile, you spent four years in high school reading Shakespeare and practicing Calculus… If you want to make sure your students learn stuff they actually will use in their lives, this podcast is for you!  When you were in grade school (or even college), how much time did teachers spend explaining practical, useful, every-day topics? How much time … Read More

How to Build a Growth Mindset Culture – Episode #003

In our class, everyone knew to always “do your best.”  These three magic words changed everything. In this episode, get all the tools and mindsets to build a classroom culture around effort and growth. It really is amazing… when you praise kids for their hard work and self-betterment, kids will work really hard to make themselves better!    This idea of praising the process — giving students credit for their hard work rather than their intelligence, was developed by Carol Dweck as part of her Growth Mindset Theory.  If you’re unfamiliar with the work of Carol Dweck and her Growth Mindset … Read More