How I Handle Deadlines

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There was a time I was extremely rigid about deadlines. I was in my very early twenties and a new teacher. The sacredness of deadlines had been drilled into me from my earliest days at St. Helena’s Grammar School in The Bronx through my college years. “Students have to learn the value of meeting deadlines… Read More »How I Handle Deadlines

Don’t Take Cheating Personally

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Click to listen to this post. We spend hours and hours planning lessons, coming up with useful and interesting assignments, and we spend huge amounts of energy directly working with students to help them not only understand those assignments but to actually succeed on them. And after all that, this little bastard turns in an… Read More »Don’t Take Cheating Personally

Cold Calling with Compassion

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If you’re like me, you remember how teachers would deliberately call on students not so much to elicit an answer but to catch a student not paying attention. I was pretty good at answering when I got called out, as after years and years of practicing, I could daydream while keeping one ear on the… Read More »Cold Calling with Compassion

Wanna Present at a Conference? Answer Three Questions in Your Proposal

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Conferences, especially when we get back to in-person, are exciting spaces. You’ll meet hundreds, even thousands of people who are passionate about the same things you are.  When teachers get together at a conference such as the National Council of Teachers of English Annual Convention, or any number of other teacher conferences, the energy is… Read More »Wanna Present at a Conference? Answer Three Questions in Your Proposal

Teaching Standard English is Racist

Since I co-authored a number of articles and chapters in the early 2000s–including the most popular “Why Revitalize Grammar?” (2003, English Journal), “Grammar Rant Analysis” (2006, English Journal), and Grammar Rants (Heinemann, 2011)–I have been exploring the ways in which grammar instruction in the USA is based on bigotry.  In the years since, I have… Read More »Teaching Standard English is Racist