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Connecting with other NBCTs provides the support that Teacher Leaders Need
Jennifer Dines, NBCTSeptember 4, 2019

Like many National Board Certified Teachers, I am proud to say that I serve in multiple teacher leadership roles in my school and within our district. My most demanding responsibility is serving as the leader of our school’s brand new Literacy Committee. Our school-wide instructional goal for the 2018-19 school year was to increase the number of grade-level readers in our building. And we did – increasing from 2.7% of students reading at grade level to 21.3%. This accomplishment took a lot of blood, sweat, and tears; our team was allotted 25 paid hours throughout the year to analyze data,…

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Who are American Muslims?
Chris Murray, NBCTJuly 30, 2019

Since achieving National Board certification in adolescent social studies several years ago, I have felt a need to continue to educate myself and lead in my specific passion — religious literacy. One religious community that continues to face alarming amounts of discrimination in and out of the classroom is the American Muslim population. This summer I was fortunate enough to be selected by the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding to serve as one of their educators. ISPU conducts objective, solution-seeking research that empowers American Muslims to develop their community and fully contribute to democracy and pluralism in the United…

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Intrinsic Motivation: How to motivate little minds
Nicole GreeneJune 28, 2019

Intrinsic Motivation. As a human, I feel it within my soul. I know the things I feel motivated to complete and the people I feel motivated to please. I have it —and I’m sure you do to—but how did we get here? How long did it take? Certainly we all found ours at different paces and for different reasons, but is there a faster way? As teachers, intrinsic motivation feels like an elusive goal. When I say the words in my head in this context, it’s in this eerie voice—almost like a fortune teller (or Professor Trelawney for my fellow…

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What is my Purpose?
Lauren Brown, NBCTJune 12, 2019

“What is my purpose?” This is a question I seem to ask myself frequently, and if you are honest with yourself, I’m willing to bet it is a question you’ve often found yourself asking as well. While my answer is consistent, the certainty of that answer seems to change throughout the seasons. My purpose is to teach. This may seem simple, but keep reading. I’ve come to learn that there are three types of educators in any building. The first type I call the “professor.” This person has an expert knowledge of his/her content and is an expert in the…

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How I found My Voice By Exiting My Comfort Zone
Amy Steger, NBCTMay 29, 2019

It all started the day I received a rejection letter for a job that, at the time, I was sure was my “dream job”.  My husband encouraged me to complete this fellowship application that I had been pushing off and, as per usual, talking myself out of. I thought he was absolutely crazy. The application consisted of five essays. I was sure I didn’t have a chance at the fellowship, and I had just two days to complete it. I started typing. Flash forward a week or two,  I am en route to Albany, New York to present at a…

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Sparking Passions through Service Learning
Kate Highsmith, NBCTMay 21, 2019

“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better.  It’s not,” is a familiar quote from Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax. The summer before I was a fifth grader, I was swimming at the beach when a loggerhead sea turtle surfaced beside me sparking my passion for protecting the sea turtles of North Carolina. This is a passion I have continued to pursue over the past 25 years.  We must teach our children to care about big ideas that matter. It is these childhood passions, developed as young learners, that will carry through to adulthood..…

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Navigating My Career Pathway
Lorna Baniaga-LeeMay 15, 2019

Ten years ago, after earning the maximum professional development credits and reaching the highest class in our teacher pay-scale, I began to wonder if there was more for me. How could teachers in my situation afford the cost of continued professional development without financial incentive? To think that my current path, my growth as a teacher, might stop there, made me uneasy. How would I continue to grow so I could provide the best for my students? Becoming an administrator did not appeal to me at the time, but building leadership skills did. So I began  volunteering to take on…

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C.E.O of your Classroom? Why not?
Stephanie Johnson, NBCTMay 7, 2019

Some of my best memories as a child occurred when I was in elementary school.  Since I was a child, community has been a large part of my life. I attended a community school that played a significant role in my upbringing.  There were many activities and programs at school and church that encouraged participation.  I distinctly remember the happiness and presence of family, members of the community, and my peers when there were PTO meetings, school performances, or school carnivals.  There were always local leaders such as nurses, firemen, and policemen with “McGruff,” the crime dog, who assisted in…

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Accomplished Teachers Help Create Informed and Engaged Citizens
Elizabeth Schley, NBCTMay 2, 2019

As a National Board Certified Teacher, I feel empowered and propelled to advocate for the best possible civic education for all students in order to create informed and engaged citizens who feel confident to participate in civil discourse. Nothing is more exciting than having one of your students hurry to class to tell you that they registered to vote, or that they watched a debate on TV, or that they are changing their major because they have become passionate about the subject of political science and history. I get so excited when I see my students engaged and enthusiastic about…

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NBCT Takes Red Sox Starting Pitcher to Bat
Carlee Soto, NBCTApril 25, 2019

What do you do when you and your students are researching a current American hero and they “go wild”? I work at an International Baccalaureate school where we promote taking action on societal issues. After much discussion with colleagues and students, I wrote a letter to inform Red Sox starting pitcher, Rick Porcello, of his behavior and its effects on my lesson plans and students. On opening day at Spring Training in Ft. Myers, I gave the letter to Porcello along with a gift bag of children’s books. Porcello read the first sentence of the letter and asked me to…

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