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Can Creativity be Taught?
Amber ChandlerSeptember 6, 2017

Are you creative? Left-brained? Right-brained? Most people are quick to answer these questions without truly understanding the nature of creativity. In the classroom, this lack of concrete knowledge about creativity can severely limit both our teaching and our students’ learning. Students’ self-perceptions are so often simply a regurgitation of what their parents have decided about them, or worse, an analysis of themselves based on internet quizzes and polls. Unfortunately, pop culture quizzes become regarded as science itself, and even educators are guilty of silo-ing students into rigid categories based on very limited information, particularly students’ self-assessments. For example, my results…

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Podcast: “Teachers are Fun to be Around”
Tom White, NBCTAugust 29, 2017

Tom White, NBCT from Lynnwood, Washington joins the new National Board podcast to discuss why he loves teaching, why he mentors teachers and what makes him laugh. Download Episode

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Four Questions Teacher Leaders Must Ask Themselves
Ray Salazar, NBCTAugust 24, 2017

Last year Teach to Lead invited me to give the keynote speech at the summit on inclusion, equity, and opportunity.  A partnership between, National Board, ASCD, and the U.S. Department of Education, Teach to Lead hosts Teacher Leadership Summits to help spotlight and advance the groundbreaking, teacher-led work that is happening in states, districts, and schools across the country. The teams from numerous parts of this country reminded me—as I’ve been reminded every year since I started teaching twenty-one years ago—that there is one universal truth that must always guide us: there are no simple solutions.  But there are solutions.  And…

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Finding Our Voices
Chris Arenth, NBCTAugust 17, 2017

Through my district’s Teacher of the Year process, I told myself that no one would see the value in what I do compared to the other fine teachers on that stage. I teach PreK, for goodness sake!  People think all we do is play! The other finalists taught AP classes and led outstanding clubs and committees.  However, on the night of the awards ceremony, one of my fellow finalists said something that helped me to see it all from a different perspective. “We all work with kids who choose to learn, we just help them achieve more.  You help your…

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My App Helps Fill a Void
Nivvi Tareen, NBCTAugust 16, 2017

I couldn’t have been more excited – during a staff meeting, my principal told me that soon my students would receive iPads. They would be ready to use and would be a great learning tool! There was a catch that left me feeling deflated. It was made clear that I could only use apps that were approved under two federal guidelines: The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). These requirements left me with a limited quantity of apps to choose from and meant that however we chose to use the iPads…

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From the Memoir of a Teacher
Akinyi J. Edmonds, NBCTAugust 10, 2017

The Top Three Things Every North Carolina Teacher Should Experience Before Exiting the Teaching Field Note:  I’m from North Carolina and this post focuses on my experiences there. But the blog is relevant to teachers across the country. Get Board-certified. Renew your certification. And, stay in the classroom and find the right ways to rejuvenate yourself and your practice. These are win-wins for all teachers, no matter where you’re from. I am a veteran business education teacher in North Carolina and my journey has been a win-win discovery for me and my students for more than 20 years. There are…

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Top 5 Ways to Find Teacher Leadership Opportunities
Amanda Koonlaba, NBCTAugust 8, 2017

Recently, I taught a professional development course on teacher leadership for my district. I shared a lot of specific opportunities that exist and shared some opportunities that I’d tried myself.  I also shared these top five ways to find opportunities in hopes that participants would be able to search and find other opportunities. These are not research-based, but come from my personal experiences. These tips have served me well, and I am happy to be able to share them with you. Join Join associations and organizations that are relevant to your discipline and to the profession. Some will have membership…

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National Board Renewal: An Exercise of Intense Reflection
Karen Vogelsang, NBCTAugust 1, 2017

Ten years ago, I became a National Board Certified Teacher, and to this day it remains the most powerful, life-changing professional development experience of my career. The original certification process was grueling. I had only been teaching four years when I decided to pursue certification, so I was still young in the field, but not a young professional, per se: I had spent the previous 14 years in banking. Serving students in urban Memphis gave me a burning desire to be the best teacher I could be and National Board Certification seemed to be the way to achieve that goal.…

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Teach Well: Who Chooses for You and Why Does that Matter?
Maureen Devlin, NBCTJuly 18, 2017

Too often in the name of efficiency directors, coaches and other administrators choose for teachers rather than supporting the kind of collaboration and autonomy that gives educators the professional choice, voice and leadership they’ve earned through their education, experience and professional tenure. Why do professional educators allow themselves to be directed with little voice or choice? Why do they follow along without speaking up, advocating and using the talent, skill and investment they regularly bring to the profession? I know that both the way time is used and school structure is created often stand in the way of teacher voice,…

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Mental Health Awareness in the Classroom
Amber Rudolph, NBCTJuly 11, 2017

Famous comedian and actor, Robin Williams, once stated, “All it takes is a beautiful fake smile to hide an injured soul, and they will never notice how broken you really are.” Sadly, these painful words mirrored Williams’s true feelings, as he succumbed to suicide after a long struggle with addiction and mental health. Unfortunately, celebrities are not the sole sufferers when it comes to emotional well-being. Many adolescent students also need to conquer this battle, especially those with overwhelming external circumstances (i.e. sexual orientation confusion, bullying, disciplinary problems) and adverse childhood experiences (i.e. abuse, neglect, divorce, death). As both a…

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