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What Would Be In Your Best High School English Class?

I'm teaching high school-level English next year for students who need a high level of academic support and I want the class to be both highly engaging and content-rich. If you were a kid who LOATHED writing for school, struggled with boring English classes, or can remember what elements you truly enjoyed in your high school English class, what advice would you pass my way? [more inside]
posted by kinetic on Jul 17, 2014 - 46 answers

how can I kindly reject PhD students?

I have just begun as an assistant professor in the humanities at a prestigious university, and I am getting more emails from prospective PhD candidates than I can handle, gracefully or otherwise. I am presently a total n00b (read: incompetent at my job) and can't realistically take more than one a year. But I have no idea how to deal with these emails. Any suggestions on how to handle them, from anyone in similar but wiser positions? Agonized details below. [more inside]
posted by starcrust on Jun 30, 2014 - 21 answers

Child reading books in the summer

Hi, My 10 year old girl loves to read. When she gets started, she loves it, but it's the "getting her started" that I have a problem with. [more inside]
posted by lynnie-the-pooh on Jun 27, 2014 - 33 answers

Tedium, tedii, tedio

I'm teaching a three-hour daily intensive college Latin class. Help me come up with ideas to relieve the mind-numbing boredom of endless drills and "The queen sent the letter to the citizens"-type sentences. [more inside]
posted by hoist with his own pet aardvark on Jun 20, 2014 - 16 answers

Teaching/Refugee Education Jobs in Seattle, WA?

I'm planning to move to Seattle in the fall and hope to work with the international/refugee population there, specifically Somalis. Which organizations are the best for international/ESL/refugee education or support for women and children? [more inside]
posted by asymptotic on Jun 16, 2014 - 5 answers

Lesson plan ideas for the last few days of school (in China)

Exams are done, grades are submitted, and we still have class? Yeah, I have up to 6 45-minute periods left with my grade 10 and 11 students next week that I would rather not fill with nothing but movies. I need ideas for something else to do with ~35 Chinese teenagers. [more inside]
posted by sarae on Jun 14, 2014 - 12 answers

What are the current important cultural touchstones of 11-13 yr olds?

I teach a summer camp, and on the first day we hand out a list of questions and have the students interview each other one-on-one as an ice-breaker. We do it very quickly, so simple questions are the best. What are some things that a group of 11-13 yr olds (mostly girls) are likely to have an opinion on? Thanks!
posted by velebita on Jun 6, 2014 - 21 answers

Can I renew my CA teaching credential if I've been teaching in AZ?

I have a clear California teaching credential that I want to renew this year. However, I currently reside in Arizona. Double however, it's likely that my wife and I will be returning to California within the next five years and I don't want to go through the reciprocity process again. Can I simply renew the CA credential? It looks like the process requires a recommendation from a "sponsoring agency" which I would assume is the county Office of Education. What do I do if I'm not living in CA? Can my district in Arizona "recommend" me? Thanks!
posted by john the fourth on May 29, 2014 - 2 answers

How can I get a sponsorship to teach in Sydney, Australia?

I was trained in primary education during my B.Ed and have 8 years experience teaching English at the secondary level. Currently residing in Vancouver, Canada. [more inside]
posted by figaro on May 24, 2014 - 8 answers

Python or Processing for first year design students?

What language should I teach design students to program in: Python or Processing? [more inside]
posted by signal on May 16, 2014 - 15 answers

I need suggestions for games (video or otherwise) for large groups

I teach MBAs entrepreneurship, but also do research on video games. I was thinking of creating an entirely optional night session (maybe with drinks) that would focus on playing games that would be fun and maybe include teachable moments for 15-30 students. I was thinking of starting with Space Team, and then doing an improv game around crazy business pitches, but I am looking for other ideas. The games need to be easy to play with large groups (or small teams off a large group), be high energy, not be inappropriate for grad students, and have some sort of vague businesses point (improvisation, teamwork, leadership, dealing with ambiguity, etc.). Any ideas?
posted by blahblahblah on May 10, 2014 - 9 answers

Seeking a quote that likens learning to read to an acrobatic task

Asking for a Montessori teacher friend: Can anyone help me find a quote about learning to read? It likens the task of reading to an acrobatic task. I can't remember the origin and haven't been able to come up with a single clue. It's just the perfect way to sum up the "reading process system" which is a boring way to say all the stuff that happens in your brain when you read. I need it for a reading workshop on Saturday. Thanks!
posted by librarina on Apr 30, 2014 - 1 answer

Need some help in setting up an informal ESL class

I've been informally tutoring my friends' kids in preparing for the New York State English standardized tests, and my friends have been happy enough with how it's going that they have now proposed another arrangement. They would like me to teach a beginning ESL class for a small group of their business's employees who are struggling with English skills. I would teach a 2-hour class of about 4-5 people once a week. My friends don't know what the going rate for that kind of instruction is in NYC, and I don't either. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Apr 28, 2014 - 7 answers

Teaching Finnegans Wake to High Schoolers

A couple of years ago I read a piece online written by a teacher about using Finnegans Wake as a teaching tool. He had them analyze the ending of the book, or rather, the beginning/end. Their analysis of it surprised him. Many of the students came up with different interpretations showing how many ways it can be read. I can't for the life of me find it anywhere. Could someone help me out?
posted by holmesian on Apr 28, 2014 - 0 answers

the short way is the long way

What are real-life examples of experiences that are 'shortcuts' to accomplishing something, even though they might be very difficult because of the required intensity? For example, military training supposedly develops a kind of physical and mental discipline that would take a civilian longer to acquire. Rapid learning techniques that allow someone to learn several languages faster than most people learn one is another example. What are others?
posted by michaelh on Apr 10, 2014 - 16 answers

Writing + Community + Speaking = Job Bliss

What are some jobs/careers/gigs that involve writing, some kind of direct interaction in a community space (such as a public library, media lab, shelter, etc.), and teaching/public speaking? Substituting counseling for teaching/public speaking is okay, but something verbal and interpersonal for #3 [more inside]
posted by elephantsvanish on Apr 9, 2014 - 7 answers

Getting a job at a private HS -- 1-2 years in the future.

Piggybacking off of this question to a certain extent -- what can I do now to make myself more attractive for teaching positions at privates high schools when I finish up my Ph.D.? [more inside]
posted by munyeca on Apr 7, 2014 - 9 answers

Studies concerning faculty perception of students.

I'm looking for a study which investigated college faculty's perception of an average student in science classrooms. [more inside]
posted by Evernix on Apr 2, 2014 - 2 answers

Seeing inspirational and mind-blowing videos for kids

What can I show children to inspire and wow them? I teach children aged between 9 and 11. I'm looking for video clips (or other) to show the children that will blow their minds - or at least, prompt discussion, broaden their horizons and take them outside of the confines of the four walls of the classroom. [more inside]
posted by schmoo on Mar 18, 2014 - 21 answers

No, really. I insist.

I fucked up at work. I offered a favor back to the person who had to bear the brunt of my fuckuppery. I think they are declining out of politeness. I understand that impulse, but I still want to do something to make things right, and have relatively few avenues where I can do that. Am I overlooking something? Am I overstepping (or risking overstepping) boundaries? [more inside]
posted by kagredon on Mar 13, 2014 - 17 answers

How much help is too much? Student edition

At what point do I tell a student to stop asking questions? [more inside]
posted by mrfuga0 on Mar 10, 2014 - 21 answers

(Very) short plays appropriate for highschool aged students?

I'm looking to find a few very short, preferably one-act, plays that are appropriate for students 14-18. Classics are OK, but I'm definitely more interested in stuff that's more contemporary (post-45?). [more inside]
posted by munyeca on Mar 9, 2014 - 16 answers

Demorialized about teaching the the University level

I feel like I am teaching to the lowest common denominator... What to do? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Feb 27, 2014 - 26 answers

burned out lawyer rethinking a new career in teaching

I just left law after 18 years as a sole practitioner. I am burned out. I'm not very money oriented, more into helping people and socializing. I like work that has a beginning and end. I've never been a good employee. I thought that I would like to become a high school social science teacher and I now have a license to teach. I'm a 54 yo female. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Feb 21, 2014 - 26 answers

Give me some easy songs for kids with no music training

I am part of a group of university-age music students who are volunteering at our local Boys and Girls Club to run a music playing-and-teaching program. I'm looking for easy pop songs that kids ages 9-15 would enjoy singing or playing along to on drums or guitar. [more inside]
posted by daisystomper on Feb 18, 2014 - 12 answers

Help me be a substitute teacher

I'm substituting as a German teacher for a class of seven Japanese students of varying ages and levels (and attendance.) Help, please? [more inside]
posted by LoonyLovegood on Feb 18, 2014 - 5 answers

I need digital video footage of real K-12 teaching for an online program

I know that a lot of things have changed since I asked a similar question several years ago, including the parameters of the project. [more inside]
posted by yellowcandy on Feb 13, 2014 - 8 answers

Explaining forces to a 10 year old

My 10 year old daughter (Year 6, UK) was recently given homework to "explain how the following works": a) gravity; b) air resistance; c) magnetism; d) upthrust; e) friction. My initial thought was that there is a Nobel prize in the offing if she can truly explain some of these, however, less flippantly, I struggled with how to do this in terms that a 10 year old would understand. Can anyone do any better? [more inside]
posted by oclipa on Feb 11, 2014 - 12 answers

Making a Rube Goldberg Setup in the Classroom

I want to create a Rube Goldberg machine (or something like it) with my students. I am not the best at teaching hands-on stuff/doing experiments and things that involve design, so I am looking for help and suggestions. [more inside]
posted by gursky on Feb 6, 2014 - 10 answers

Help me come up with exciting "sharing themes" for my second graders!

I am in my first year of teaching (2nd grade, so 7-8 year olds), and as part of our regular (or semi-regular) weekly routine, kids share something to the rest of the class in the morning. It's a part of the 2nd grade tradition here to have "themes" for each new week of sharing, and I'm running out of ones that inspire me. [more inside]
posted by ORthey on Jan 31, 2014 - 12 answers

How to get a 5 year old disney princess excited about science?

Any ideas on making discovery fun for a princess obsessed 5 year old girl? [more inside]
posted by savitarka on Jan 28, 2014 - 44 answers

Teach me to teach

Lately, I've been teaching a lot of semi-formal training classes at work. I haven't had much experience with this kind of thing, and I'm looking for tips. [more inside]
posted by escape from the potato planet on Jan 24, 2014 - 10 answers

Part-time work for outdoorsy science-minded retired teacher?

My mom is 65. She's been teaching math & science at a high school for years. She's getting ready to retire, and would like to work (not just volunteer) part-time for a few years. Tutoring is an obvious choice. But she'd rather explore something else. What other part-time gigs might be a good fit? Of note: she is a total badass. Super sharp. Athletic. Loves to travel. Has been known to take off on long bike adventures/kayak trips/etc. Seeking something delightful to feed her mind/body. [more inside]
posted by red_rabbit on Jan 21, 2014 - 11 answers

Movie suggestions please.

I want to show a movie to a group of 15-16 year olds after we've finished reading Sherman Alexie's "The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian". [more inside]
posted by figaro on Jan 20, 2014 - 11 answers

Focusing on the weaknesses

I'm looking for new ways to address my pupils' weaknesses. [more inside]
posted by nicolin on Jan 19, 2014 - 5 answers

Advice for a teacher getting their master's degree

I'm in my second year of teaching, but I had a late start and have had my BA for 8 years now. I want to get my MA, but I'm not sure if (1) this is the time or (2) if I should focus on my content area or on education in general. [more inside]
posted by BradNelson on Jan 18, 2014 - 11 answers

Inbred instruction

My wife will be teaching at the same private school where our six-year-old son is a student. In fact, he will be one of her students. What can we do to better handle this situation? [more inside]
posted by dances_with_sneetches on Jan 17, 2014 - 16 answers

Awesome lessons in college writing?

What really great activities, exercises or lessons do you remember from your undergrad-level writing or composition courses? [more inside]
posted by yersinia on Jan 17, 2014 - 12 answers

Looking for a teaching (digital) camera

I'm getting ready to teach a photography class for "at-risk" high schoolers. We have 8-10 students, and a budget of $1000 for supplies. So I'm trying to decide what cameras to buy for this class (and future classes), and seeking a camera that's cheap enough that we can buy 8-10 of them, but has enough manual control that it's interesting to play with. [more inside]
posted by ThatFuzzyBastard on Jan 15, 2014 - 7 answers

Help me introduce my 72 year old mother to the Internet

I bought my Mom a computer for Christmas and I'm heading down to see her this weekend to orient her to the online world. [more inside]
posted by jason's_planet on Jan 14, 2014 - 19 answers

What songs reference events in U.S. History?

Please help me create a comprehensive list of songs that reference events in U.S. History! I teach high school U.S. History courses, and each day between classes I try to play a song that references what we'll be studying that day - students try to guess who the song is by and how it relates to what we're studying as they come into class. [more inside]
posted by leitmotif on Jan 13, 2014 - 107 answers

Friday night, at the high school basketball game.

I am a young, single teacher and my whole life is consumed by school. How do I survive this and not end up lonely forever? [more inside]
posted by sockysocksock on Jan 10, 2014 - 10 answers

Advice about alternative teaching certification in Texas?

Do you have advice about choosing an alternative teaching certification program in Texas? [more inside]
posted by vincele on Jan 6, 2014 - 3 answers

Help us choose a country to live in

We are thinking of applying for jobs in international schools in the next few years. We'd like to choose between Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia or Hong Kong. What we would prefer - a financial situation that is a little more comfortable than the one we can have in Melbourne on 2 teaching wages (private sector so slightly better pay than state). This could mean only one of us working but getting housing included - a situation that is conducive to the fact that we will have one small child (baby due soon) We've both been to KL and travelled reasonably extensively in Indonesia. We have some contacts in Jakarta. I've spent a day in Singapore and neither of us have been to Hong Kong. We'd appreciate info on lifestyle, housing costs and the kinds of packages one is likely to get from an international school. [more inside]
posted by jojobobo on Jan 5, 2014 - 7 answers

How to manage emotions when teaching

How do you keep yourself from getting too emotionally invested in your students and your teaching? My day can be made or destroyed by my students and the extent to which this happens makes me uncomfortable. [more inside]
posted by sarae on Dec 31, 2013 - 17 answers

Life after Teaching?

I have surpassed the statistical average and have taught (Mathematics) in NYC public schools for over 10 years. I have an MA in Psychology and a need for a change. Any suggestions Mefites? [more inside]
posted by bquarters on Dec 30, 2013 - 16 answers

Looking for tools to teach HTML to a 4th grader

I offered to mentor a friend's kids in HTML and I'm looking for teaching tools that would be accessible to elementary-aged children. Free is ideal, but doesn't have to be if it's really excellent. [more inside]
posted by annekate on Dec 4, 2013 - 6 answers

How much to charge for part-time film lecturer position?

[HowMuchShouldIChargeFilter]: I've recently been asked to teach a filmmaking course in New York on a part-time basis by a private start-up. What to charge? Details inside. [more inside]
posted by war wrath of wraith on Nov 30, 2013 - 8 answers

This post will change your life!

How can I best fill two hours in order to help young adults? [more inside]
posted by Cuke on Nov 22, 2013 - 17 answers

25 minute Spanish lesson

Tell me what topics would make you excited to learn a foreign language. [more inside]
posted by chainsofreedom on Nov 21, 2013 - 12 answers

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