Brain Predictions and Growth Mindsets

Math teacher helps student using an iPad

In January, the students in my Foundational Pre-Algebra class passed a key milestone in our growth as a learning community: Every student demonstrated a willingness to ask for help in the moment as they needed it. For a teacher, this is huge. It means I can address confusion and misunderstandings Continue reading Brain Predictions and Growth Mindsets

Here for Each Other

5th graders walk to lunch with their teacher.

On the first day of school in a typical year, the entire Middle School community gathers together in the Multi-Purpose Room for an assembly. I begin by greeting everyone and asking all of the adults to stand in their spots around the room. “Every one of these teachers is your Continue reading Here for Each Other

A Piece of Art, A Piece of Heart

Middle School art students working on their Art Exchange projects.

This December on Dana Hall’s Day of Community Learning, I was given the great opportunity of facilitating one of the workshops that would support the theme of this year’s program: “Building Bridges and Sharing Spaces.” This theme serendipitously aligned with the overarching goals of the Memory Project, an organization that Continue reading A Piece of Art, A Piece of Heart

What you shelf talkin’ about?

A shelf of books in the Helen Temple Cooke library

“I just don’t have time, Ms. Davidov.” “I would, but I can’t. I’ve got other stuff I need to do.” “I used to love reading. Remember Middle School, guys?” These are comments I hear over and over again as I talk to students. Time for anything personal is sparse. There Continue reading What you shelf talkin’ about?

Academic Vigor from 30 Feet Up

Dana Hall 7th graders at TreeTop Adventures

In September, the Middle School went to a ropes course for its retreat. As a teacher new to Dana Hall, it was an illuminating opportunity to observe students in a different learning environment. I saw girls bonding, taking risks, and supporting one another. The experience was energizing, setting the stage Continue reading Academic Vigor from 30 Feet Up

From “What?!” to “Wow!”

Map of the world.

Teaching languages is about a lot of things. Helping students develop communication skills in the language they are studying is, of course, a top priority. Less obvious objectives include helping students appreciate language structure and words which often connote cultural and historical details. Language teachers also hope that their students Continue reading From “What?!” to “Wow!”