May 31, 2014See All Newsletters
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Hi Member,
A few weeks ago I assigned my seniors their final exam: each of them would deliver a commencement address. Even though most of them were counting down the days to graduation, they looked confused. “What’s a commencement address?” they asked. “You know, commencing, carrying on, moving onto even more important stuff.” They looked at me with blank stares. I finally said, “A graduation speech.”

Their initial puzzlement got me thinking about the difference between graduation and commencement; two words we use interchangeably. But they mark the difference between finishing and beginning, accomplishing and launching, culminating and initiating. Perhaps the same difference defines this time of year for us, too. Because even as we prepare to finish this year, we’ve already begun thinking about the possibilities of the next one. Some think a teacher’s summer is about a “break,” but we know our collective summers of reflecting, learning, growing, and nurturing are only just about to commence.

My Tch colleague Erika Nielsen Andrew has written an inspiring blog post to help us rethink what these important milestones mean to students and teachers. Enjoy!

Teacher Laureate at Teaching Channel

3 Videos On Giving Positive Feedback 

See how Mr. Ronevich improves his practice by encouraging his students to give constructive feedback.
Watch how Ms. Tabor works with a coach and other teachers to analyze her students’ work and grow her practice.
Simple acknowledgements of student effort are important at the beginning and the end of the year.
Blogger Carrie Kamm shares more ideas — like a photo slide show or a closing circle — to help you honor your classroom community and the learning that has happened throughout the year.