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Welcome back, Students!

This article was submitted by Shruti Sheshadri, a Teach For India Fellow.  Shruti handles Grade 2 at the CMS, MMDA Colony-1. A month. Yes, it has been a month indeed. These 30 days filled with emotions unknown, exasperation on one end and dread on the other. As we look at…


The Heart of Character Building

  We live in a troubled world. A random glance at the newspapers will only confirm that there are many things about our modern society that we need to be concerned about. Crime is on the rise. Divisive thinking is widespread. A basic civic sense is often missing. Tolerance of…

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Corporal Punishment: The Monster That Won’t Leave Us!

It’s been a little over a month that Bangalore was rocked by the shocking rape of a 6-year old in an upscale school in town – during school hours. Bangalore awakened to a rude shock and deep disappointment when their willingness to pay a premium for the safety of their…

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Tough Young Teachers: Episode-1

In this BBC Documentary, Oxford graduate Charles is teaching at the Archbishop Lanfranc School in Croydon, a rundown and overcrowded comprehensive. Charles faces a huge workload of 500 students a week to teach, some of whom have only just arrived in the country and cannot speak English. Oliver is on…

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Building Students’ Thinking Skills with a Morning Announcement Routine

We knew from test results and our own observations that we needed to focus school-wide on building critical thinking skills. As principal, I wanted to play an active role in that effort. I wanted to model excitement for critical thinking that would be contagious. But how could I engage all…

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Freedom Writers

This ambitious drama is based on the true story of an idealistic teacher who took on the challenge of educating a diverse group of high school students classified as “unteachables” in Los Angeles in 1994 shortly after the beating of Rodney King and the subsequent riots. Woodrow Wilson High School…

Easy as Pi

Easy as Pi

I asked this group of well-educated professionals what they remembered from their own education about pi. Someone responded, “3.14159.” “You’re right,” I said, “that is the value of pi, but does anyone remember what pi means?”

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Take Five: Offering Advice to Help First-Year Teachers Succeed

You can help new teachers succeed by offering advice such as this from principal Terri Kirkman: “Realize that you will probably learn more in your first year of teaching than you did in all four years of your college.”


Raising Achievement of Students Who Score in the Bottom 25 Percent

I’ll be honest: At one time, we were not doing a very good job of tracking the achievement and test scores of the bottom 25 percent of our students. We couldn’t have told you if they were progressing or not.


Feeling Overwhelmed by the Job of Principal?

There were days when it seemed like I was working in a zoo. I felt overwhelmed by all the problems that came to the principal’s office. There never seemed to be enough time in the day.