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Stuffed Neurons and Growth Mindset
Tammy Ranger, NBCTFebruary 1, 2017

When I was growing up in Central Maine, my parents owned several businesses—some did well, some did not. The beauty salon thrived, as did the sandwich business. The tanning salon brought our family to the brink of bankruptcy, but the ceiling cleaning business, the last of my parents’ entrepreneurial adventures, was extremely successful.  Over the years, my father’s friends, always curious about his business ventures, would ask questions like, “Harry, what ever happened with that tanning business, anyway?” My dad would smile, shake his head and say, “Hey, I don’t know–everyone got tanned and we got burned!” And when they…

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See the System
Mark Gardner, NBCTJanuary 25, 2017

Of the National Board’s Five Core Propositions, teachers being part of learning communities was long the toughest for me as an NBCT teacher-leader to connect with, largely because of my schema around what “learning community” should mean. For a dozen years, we have been a DuFour Professional Learning Community (PLC) District. We’ve carved out time for teams to meet, but in those dozen years of “implementation,” the systems as constructed were producing what one of my colleagues accurately described as “Professional Compliance Communities.” For years, our PLC system felt like hoops we teachers were obligated to leap in order to…

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Thinking Systematically and Learning From Experience to Impact Student Learning
Leslee Milch, NBCTJanuary 18, 2017

Recently re-released, What Teachers Should Know and Be Able to Do articulates the National Board’s Five Core Propositions for teaching. Similar to medicine’s Hippocratic Oath, the Five Core Propositions are held in common by teachers of all grade levels and disciplines and underscore the accomplished teacher’s commitment to advancing student learning and achievement. This blog focuses on core proposition 4 that states, “Teachers think systematically about their practice and learn from experience.” My journey started in 2002, when my superintendent at the time handed me a flyer about National Board Certification. She said, “I think this is something you need…

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Networking for Success
Stacey McCluskey, NBCTJanuary 12, 2017

Before the end of the year, I experienced a perfect day for a hike. It was breezy and cool. The air had that sweet smell and the sky was cloudless. I had driven for about an hour to reach my destination, and upon my arrival, stepped out of my car, took a deep breath of fresh air, hoisted my bags onto my shoulders, and walked down a paved pathway to sit inside for the next four hours. The Bigelow Mountains would have to wait. This day was for networking.* Teaching is like hiking. Preparation helps to ensure an enjoyable experience,…

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I Think We Won: Revising What Teachers Should Know and Be Able to Do
Robyn Seglem, NBCTJanuary 9, 2017

Recently re-released, What Teachers Should Know and Be Able to Do articulates the National Board’s Five Core Propositions for teaching. Similar to medicine’s Hippocratic Oath, the Five Core Propositions are held in common by teachers of all grade levels and disciplines and underscore the accomplished teacher’s commitment to advancing student learning and achievement. This blog focuses on core proposition 3 that states, “Teachers are responsible for managing and monitoring student learning.”   Administer. Dominate. Govern. Supervise. Manage. To oversee, supervise, or regulate. To watch closely for purposes of control, surveillance, etc.; keep track of; check continually. Monitor. As an English teacher and literacy educator, I am constantly reminded of how much words matter. They…

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Fire up the Reflective Practitioners
Kathleen Shahan, NBCTJanuary 5, 2017

My own fiery reflective journey began in earnest over a decade of three attempts at certification in the National Board Certification process.  I speak from experience when I suggest that for some, the “reflective practitioner” (Danielson, 2013) is not as much born; as is instead, forged in the twin fires of doubt and failure.  Questions like “What went wrong in my class or with this lesson? Why did this end up this way?” are indicators that you too have been fired up in the reflective process.  Danielson, 2013 recognized over time professional educators could develop this skill of reflective practice,…

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Teachers know the subjects they teach and how to teach those subjects to students
Dat Le, NBCTDecember 21, 2016

Recently re-released, What Teachers Should Know and Be Able to Do articulates the National Board’s Five Core Propositions for teaching. Similar to medicine’s Hippocratic Oath, the Five Core Propositions are held in common by teachers of all grade levels and disciplines and underscore the accomplished teacher’s commitment to advancing student learning and achievement. This blog focuses on core proposition 2 that states, “Teachers know the subjects they teach and how to teach those subjects to students.” As part of the committee that worked on revising, What Teachers Should Know and Be Able to Do, I am excited about how it…

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Teacher-led professional development leads to innovation
Carly Baldwin, NBCTDecember 20, 2016

My professional journey actually started when I was born.   My mom was a middle school math teacher for more than 30 years. She is a National Board certified teacher and one of the first Presidential Award of Excellence for Math and Science Teaching (PAEMST) winners. Many vacations were taken around math conferences and professional development opportunities. These car rides included finding and raising Monarch caterpillars and solving math word problems for fun.   I just assumed that’s what teachers did; they taught their students and never stopped learning or improving their craft. So when I started teaching, I became…

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The Power of a National Board Crew
Anna BaldwinDecember 15, 2016

I knew National Board certification made sense. I knew it would be a gift to myself, some way to address my own needs as a teacher and reignite the passion for reaching every student. I just couldn’t do it alone: I needed a crew. In a tiny rural district, finding a crew for any purpose is tricky, and some of the steps required by the National Board process can present barriers. Instead of giving up, I started brainstorming ways to navigate the steps and help my colleagues along the way. Step One was exposure. There are still plenty of teachers…

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Helping students learn starts with learning about students
Jaime Festa-Daigle, NBCTDecember 14, 2016

Recently re-released, What Teachers Should Know and Be Able to Do articulates the National Board’s Five Core Propositions for teaching. Similar to medicine’s Hippocratic Oath, the Five Core Propositions are held in common by teachers of all grade levels and disciplines and underscore the accomplished teacher’s commitment to advancing student learning and achievement. This blog focuses on core proposition 1 that states, “Teachers are committed to students and their learning.” As a high school government and economics teacher, I sometimes taught as many as 170 students each semester. Every hour a new group of students, with different ideas, personalities and…

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