Happier Teachers, Better Student Outcomes? --THE TEACHERS EDITION -- February 23, 2017

The Teachers Edition

What Teachers Are Talking About This Week

February 23, 2017  |  Sign up to receive The Teachers Edition.

Food Network Star Thanks His Teacher

Guy Fieri

Giving back to the teacher who inspired him the most, Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives host Guy Fieri returned to greet his 8th grade teacher, Fran Fischer, who helped him" enter his pretzel pushcart in that year’s Humboldt County History Day." Read about why he remembers her and the incredible gift he gave her (Fecteau, People).  

Strong women

Developing Strong and Confident Women

Although this particular article is aimed at parents, it is written by a school counselor and is a helpful resource for teachers to read and to share with their parents. Developing strong and confident young ladies takes a well-rounded approach, and it helps when we all have the same information to rally around. Teachers spend a large amount of time with their students; we should make sure that we're doing our best to develop girls to be their best selves as adults (Fagell, Washington Post). 

NGO Tackles Youth Unemployment in Uganda

A new pedagogy using games, group work and public speaking is helping students in Uganda break the cycle of poverty and youth unemployment. “Educate! is an experience-based education model where a mentor goes into a secondary school with 40 "scholars". The mentor spends time with the scholars, delivering sessions on entrepreneurship, leadership, critical thinking and problem solving ” (Bolton, Aljazeera).

Uganda Youth

Explaining Why Teachers are so Tired

Those outside of the teaching profession may not understand why teachers are exhausted at the end of each day. Blogger and Michigan teacher, Paul Murphy, breaks down the scientific reasons why this is happening - decision fatigue and will power. Murphy explores why the fatigue exists, and plans to share some ways teachers can combat the exhaustion in a later post.  

Funding Bump Experiment Finds Success

Students working

In Littleton, Colo. district administrators decided to address the needs of one struggling elementary school by strategically deploying funds to hire teachers in creative ways. The new staff assist with English language learners, extra academic time, and support for students coping with issues outside the school building. "You still have to have really high quality teachers who work really hard, but when you have the funding for those people, it is a dramatic difference,”says Lyn Bajaj, principal of Field Elementary (Brundin, Colorado Public Radio). 

Do Happier Teachers Lead to Better Student Outcomes?

It's no surprise that teacher job satisfaction affects their performance, but a new study by Neena Banerjee of Valdosta State University and three professors from University of North Carolina-Charlotte confirms that students' reading scores are higher when they are taught by educators reporting high job satisfaction levels. However, being part of a professional learning community can mitigate the effects of job dissatisfaction (Will, Education Week).

Students learning

Blended Learning Increases Equity

A school district known for its diversity aims to attain and sustain equity through blended learning approaches. At Morris School District (N.J.), instructors and technology experts have found that balancing technology with face-to-face interaction can help struggling students excel. One strategy has been to provide all students with Chromebooks and in-home wifi, if they lack it. Fourth-grade teacher Teddie Salas says, “When students come to school, everyone is equal. Everyone has the same device, everyone has the same opportunity" (Curtis, EdSurge News).


Mascot Leads the Way for Inclusion

Sports, pep rallies, and school spirit can be a uniting factor for students of diverse backgrounds. High school student, Kameron King, is the school's bulldog mascot and is also deaf. With the help of the cheerleaders and cheer coach, King is responsible for building enthusiasm at games and keeping support going for the team. King attends Portland Public Schools through a partnership with the Maine Educational Center for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (Collins, The Forecaster).

Resources to Use

What We Heard from Educators This Week

love teaching

5. "I help my students along the way to be their best selves." Teacher, North Carolina

4. "My students are my kids...love them like my own!" Teacher, New York

3. "I am making a difference by taking more risks this year." Teacher, Texas

2. "I love going to my students' events. Taking an interest in what they do in and out of school shows you care." Teacher, Minnesota

1. "I love teaching because I love kids. I'm honored and challenged to be my best self and set an example for them in kindness, empathy, and patience." Teacher, Oklahoma