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What About Authentic Appreciation All Year Long?
Jessica Cuthbertson, NBCTMay 6, 2016

It’s Teacher Appreciation Week. That one week a year when social media explodes with gratitude for educators across the country as we collectively #ThankATeacher. A week when we pause to appreciate the profession that makes all others possible.   On Tuesday, May 3, the official Teacher Appreciation Day, I joined five other National Board Certified Teachers from across the country and Peggy Brookins, CEO and President of the National Board, for the mother of all teacher celebrations — the recognition of the National Teacher of the Year, Jahana Hayes, by President Obama at the White House. The event was filled…

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A Gift for Teacher Appreciation Week in the Form of Two Questions
Jennifer Dines, NBCTMay 2, 2016

It’s Teacher Appreciation Week! In 1985, the National Parent-Teacher Association declared the first week of May as a time to appreciate the work of educators throughout the United States. Since then, Teacher Appreciation week has become an annual tradition in American life. I myself have enjoyed basking in the love that my colleagues and I receive during this week of celebration. Last year, I received homemade chocolate-covered strawberries and a beautiful plant (delivered to my office by two caring parents with wonderful smiles) from the Gardner Pilot Academy Home-School Association. I also attended the Boston Foundation’s annual Teacher Appreciation Week…

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Making Instructional Shifts with Video Cases
Mark Ellis, NBCTApril 29, 2016

We’ve all been there. In the current education environment, we’ve all faced the challenge of figuring out how to translate instructional shifts from theory to practice. Is this even feasible in a real classroom? How will that work with my students? Variations of these questions are coming up frequently, I suspect, for educators all over the country right now. At least they are in my world, as they represent common concerns voiced by my colleagues and peers as we determine the best ways to support deeper learning that’s reflective of changing state standards. They are valid concerns as well, coming…

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A Math Teacher Goes to the Capitol…And Why You Need To Do the Same
Gina Wilson, NBCTApril 26, 2016

If you had asked me six months ago if I would be requesting meetings with legislators and sharing my experiences as an educator with them, I would have laughed at you. But that is exactly what I did this month and will be doing in the future. If you are an educator you need to do this too. Let me tell you how.   This month, I attended the Michigan Educator Voice Convening and spent most of the day in the Michigan Capitol building. I first met with Michigan Representative Adam Zemke (@adamzemke) with a team of three teachers and…

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The Architecture of Accomplished Teaching…of Teachers
Mark Gardner, NBCTApril 22, 2016

Earning my National Board Certification was a professional turning point for me, as it was for many teachers I know. It was early in my career when I submitted my Blue Box (with VHS tapes!), but as soon as I connected with the community of National Board Certified Teachers (NBCTs) here in Washington state, hallways filled with doors of opportunity opened to me. As I’ve navigated through these new doors, my role has shifted from teacher of teenagers to teacher of fellow teachers and administrators. Stepping into this uncharted territory, I found that the skill set I brought as an…

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National Board Changed My Standards
Rhea IsenbergApril 15, 2016

A group of three, four and five year olds check out books with their teacher. Another small group of three year olds extends their learning from the classroom using the coding robot with a teacher assistant. Meanwhile, I work on a MakerSpace activity that guides students to build their own snowmen from healthy and unhealthy foods, which builds on a read-aloud I had conducted previously. This is our media center — a place to extend and expand on student learning, a place alive with student voices and student growth. Not so long ago, my students came to the library for…

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Hollywood Got it Wrong…But Washington Gets it Right
Joanna Schimizzi, NBCTApril 8, 2016

When educators take back education legislation Every Student Succeeds Act. The name leads us to wish for a world in which every student experiences a classroom designed specifically to help them overcome every obstacle that they’ve been dealt. As professional educators, we don’t want to be jaded, but it sounds a bit “Hollywood.” Think of those movies that depict the difficulties of being a teacher, but then the ending ties everything up in a beautiful red bow. Every student succeeding sounds a bit like every student being “above average” – mathematically impossible! And a new piece of legislation? Don’t teachers…

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NOW is the Right Time to Consider National Board Certification
Patrick LedesmaMarch 31, 2016

As the next candidate cycle begins on April 1, 2016, many educators around the country will ask themselves, “Is now the right time to consider National Board Certification?” or “Am I ready to become a candidate?” I remember asking similar questions when I saw an information session flyer about Board certification posted on a bulletin board in the teacher workroom at my school. I was very curious! Board certification was highly regarded; unfortunately, I did not know any National Board Certified Teachers (NBCTs).  The whole thing was a mystery. I remember thinking about the “what’s” and “why’s” – wondering what…

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Reflecting on Teacher Leadership Through a Lens of Stewardship
Jennifer Dines, NBCTMarch 30, 2016

As a National Board Certified Teacher, I recognize that accomplished teaching practice begins with knowing my students. The National Board’s Architecture of Accomplished Teaching provides guiding questions around knowing our students’ identities:    Who are they?  Where are they now?  What instruction/support do they need and in what order do they need it?  Where should I begin?   At the 2016 Teaching & Learning Conference, Benjie Howard and Wade Colwell-Sandoval of New Wilderness Project demonstrated exemplary practice in building from a foundation of identity in their session, “Connecting Deeply Across Difference – Engaging Youth as Equity Stewards.” Although the focus of…

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It’s time to make the magic happen!
Sally Brothers, NBCTMarch 23, 2016

If someone had told me when I was a novice teacher that something truly magical would happen in my career twenty years later, I would have found it hard to believe. It was a perfect storm of sorts; it began with my journey of achieving National Board Certification. This achievement gave me the confidence to apply for a Teacher Leader role in a new initiative begun in my district. For four years now, I have had the luxury of teaching half days and spending the other half of the day helping teachers turn great ideas into possibilities and then into…

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