Tests Can’t Tell The Future So Quit Giving Them So Much Power

He looked like a 7th-grader’s version of a gangster. Skinny as a minute, practice tattoos from his friend dotting the tops of his fingers, laughing at everything. He wore lots of red: a flat-brimmed baseball cap pulled low over his eyes, a red basketball jersey over a white T-shirt, red shoes, his neck roped with silver chains.

“Hey hey, Miss Gangsta Teacher, what’s up?”

His laugh, high and silly. And charming. I found myself looking forward to the fact that he would laugh at even my worst jokes.

“Mrs. Loughlin IS a gangster,” I said, laughing with him, teasing my friend and colleague, Elaine, who’d brought me over to the high school to help her teach night class.

“I’m not Miss Gangster Teacher, I’m Mrs. Loughlin,” she said, thoroughly unamused.

“No, you Miss Gangsta because you teach me to pass the test.”

Continue reading Tests Can’t Tell The Future So Quit Giving Them So Much Power

Here’s a Crazy Idea – Let Students Go To The Bathroom!

This whole conversation about who we should and shouldn’t let go into which bathrooms got me thinking about the most controversial thing I ever did as a teacher. I’d love to tell you it was teaching a banned book or something intellectual, but it was really all about the bathroom.

Continue reading Here’s a Crazy Idea – Let Students Go To The Bathroom!