Latest posts from South Louisiana

Jun 26 2012

This is me, thanking you.

“You’ll thank me someday.” My mom and dad would say those words to me every day while I was toiling away at some extra-curricular activity that I hated. Those moments in my home were filled with anger and hostility, heavy with the feeling of oppressive dictators, my parents, coming down on the little, innocent citizen,…

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Aug 29 2011

What Teaching Means to Me and Why it is Important…

Teaching is learning. Teaching is enriching. Teaching is challenging, it’s trying in unimaginable ways. Teaching is caring. Teaching is exhilarating, it’s exciting every day. Teaching is motivating, it’s inspiring. Teaching is frustrating, it’s frightening. Teaching is energizing. Teaching is draining. Teaching is collaborating. Teaching is growing. Teaching is dividing. Teaching is equalizing. Teaching is loving.…

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Aug 28 2011

Bontemps on Bontemps St.

The last 84 days of my life are a blur. Once upon a time in early June, I arrived in my new home state, Louisiana, to embark on the most transformational journey of my young life. I spent the second week of June living at the beautiful Crowne Plaza hotel in Baton Rouge–a city I’ve…

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Mar 26 2011

Cold calling totally works!

On Tuesday, as promised, I launched Teach Like a Champion Technique #22, Cold Calling, in my college class.   And it was awesome!  I didn’t do a very good job with my questioning technique, so things looked a little (well, a lot) sloppier than they do on the sample videos — but everyone was awake and…

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Mar 18 2011

Teach Like a Champion

I am in love. With my birthday gift card, I bought a copy of Doug Lemov’s Teach Like a Champion. I’m most of the way through, and I’m so excited. I love these techniques, and I love how explicit the book is about what to do and how to do it. I’ve been teaching college…

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Feb 27 2011

I turn my camera on.

Thursday was the due date for my (first? last?) round of hiring materials: shiny new TFA-templated resume, professional photograph, and the dreaded VIDEO. The good news:  I’m not as truamatized by seeing myself on video as I expected to be. The bad news:  It took over eight hours to produce, upload, and email these three…

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Feb 12 2011

“Onboarding” is a funny word.

One that’s sort of reminiscent of pirates. Also one that I’d never heard before TFA started onboarding me (that just cannot be the correct usage, but you know what I mean), but that I’ve heard  in multiple places since then.  Vocab words are funny like that. I’m certain that when TFA talks about onboarding, they’re…

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Feb 12 2011

Apparently, the physical sciences are not my thing.

This shouldn’t come as a surprise, I suppose, because math is also not really my thing.  But I took physics in high school and liked it, and I took chemistry and AP bio in high school and really didn’t.  So I’ve been trundling merrily through life thinking of myself as not really a bio person…

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Jan 16 2011


I’ve been teaching GRE preparation classes off and on for the last year or so, and my students are usually really tense and unhappy about taking the test.  I spend a lot of time trying to reframe the significance of the test for them–it’s nice to do well, but it’s not a particularly fair/accurate test,…

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Nov 21 2010

I may need more index cards.

I’ve received my Praxis middle school science prep book (thank you, free Amazon Prime trial) and it is…chock full of the science.  Not super well-written, unfortunately–there are a few definitions that are sort of circular and un-illuminating, including an entire paragraph that boils down to “a substance is a material” and is done in such…

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