Latest posts from Detroit

Jun 18 2013

Four Reflections on Pre-Institute Work

I just finished packing for Institute, and before that crazy adventure starts, I thought I would take a few moments to reflect on my pre-Institute work. A major caveat before I begin: Mostly, I only did the reading that was required of me. I rarely chose to investigate the optional resources, and I acknowledge that…

read more »
Jun 12 2013

The Mess of My Mind Pre-Institute

I am a natural optimist. I’m told that’s one of the qualities TFA recruiters select for. So, in that sense, I’m here because of my optimism. But since being accepted into the 2013 corps, I’ve had the opportunity to be around a bunch of other optimists, and I’ve realized that there are other significant parts of…

read more »
Jun 02 2013

Book Club Part II: “Teaching and Its Predicaments” and “Teaching Minds”

I have recently made the decision to become a member of audible, entitling me to two free audiobooks a month. The benefit of this lovely service is I get to consume way more educational nonfiction without having to take time from teaching/lesson planning/gym. The drawback is that unlike with fiction, I love having books on…

read more »
May 08 2013


7th Grader: “Is that phone a 3G or a 4G?” Me: “It’s a zero-G.” 7: “Are you serious!?!” My kids are always concerned about my lack of coolness and technology. They normally look at me with a mix pitying looks and judgement when they see my old phone, but I think I completely blew their…

read more »
Apr 04 2013

At some point…

At some point during the year I stopped posting. (You can look at the date for yourself.) Life is crazy and maybe I need to be on here to reflect more… but I am currently on Spring Break at my parent’s house in the rural South. I’ve been going back and forth with myself about…

read more »
Apr 02 2013

Educational Hypotheses (and a pathetic chart)

I’ve been trying for a while now to draw out my thoughts on education reform in a relatively clear way. However, when I think about any subject, I like to think not just in terms of how things are, but rather how they are changing. So, what follows is a hypothesis (or really a series…

read more »
Mar 31 2013

New Book/Article Discussion Series: Ted Purinton’s Six Degrees of School Improvement

In the fall, I will begin a doctoral program in educational policy. I’m hoping to spend the next few months clarifying my thoughts on schools and education reform, and I think the best way to do that is to read a diverse and influential series of articles and books that challenge and expand my assumptions…

read more »
Jan 15 2013

An argument against a teacher bar-exam.

In response to the ever-vexing Joel Klein, a couple Atlantic authors released a solid critique of the new “teacher bar exam” movement. No doubt, teaching has definitely solidified for me the idea that “standard resume characteristics — level of education, certifications or licenses, and experience beyond the first few years of teaching — have essentially…

read more »
Dec 11 2012

Coffee Shop

After Pro-Sat this weekend I spent some time tutoring a former student who is now at a new high school at a coffee shop in Detroit. Somewhere in between hot chocolate, peppermint tea, and dihybrid crosses I remembered why I am a teacher despite all of the struggles of the past two years. When I…

read more »
Nov 05 2012


Reading about the struggles and worries in my students’ lives is heartbreaking. Reading about their dreams and goals is inspiring.  

read more »