Take Note(s)

Note-taking is almost as old as education itself.  As soon as people discovered ways to record information that were less expensive than the laborious process of making paper or parchment (hello, wax tablets and chunks of slate and chalk!), note-taking became an integral part of the This is the subject of a recent podcast from […]

The Burden of Learning

We’re going way back on this one, and while it may seem controversial, hang in there. It will make sense by the end. B.F. Skinner is sometimes called the father of operant conditioning. This is the practice of teaching animals to perform complex tasks by means of a reinforcement.  The practices that Skinner pioneered have […]


As auditors, one of our jobs is to analyze and evaluate student work artifacts: the actual assignments students are given to do in their classrooms. We look at these to see if they correspond the curricular objectives, and to evaluate the level of cognitive demand they require.  In other words, how much and how complexly […]

A Dream Denied: The Resurrection of Racial Segregation in Public Schools

Segregation is something that many people think occurred in the past.  They may have a hazy image of the Norman Rockwell painting of Ruby Bridges being escorted to school by U.S. Marshals.  Or they may never think of it at all, either because they are unaware of it outside of knowledge needed for a social […]

Writing Quality Curriculum Training at the Centennial BOCES in Greeley, Colorado, June 13-15, 2018

This is an awesome opportunity to attend this training which is being held in Greeley, Colorado just prior to the Big Sky 2018 conference in Estes Park. This training is OPEN TO THE PUBLIC.    Click on the link below to access the downloadable registration and pricing information. NA Centennial BOCES Curriculum Writing  

Do Reading Programs Undermine Reading?

Well, yes. Some of them do. Most of us, as educators,  have an idealized image of how children should read.  We want fluency, comprehension, analytical ability, and of course we want them to read for pleasure — for the sheer enjoyment of falling into another world and feeling what the characters feel, seeing what they […]

Big Sky 2018: Great Hikes Near Estes Park

Auditors:  We are getting closer and closer to Big Sky 2018!  We are really excited about our conference venue this year.  One of the great attractions of the area is the hiking.  Rock Mountain National Park has many wonderful trails that will literally take you all over the interior of the park through an amazing […]

Culturally Responsive Teaching: How the Brain Can Hijack Learning

  This one is going to be technical, so hang on. The brain, like a computer, has certain in-built structures — its hardware, if you will.  These structures sort and store  information through experiences and then apply it when necessary to ensure our survival. The structures developed in three layers, from the bottom up, and […]

Culturally Responsive Teaching: How Not to Miss the Point

Culturally Responsive Teaching has been a buzzword in education for several years now. As a result, many teachers make an effort to include cultural artifacts from diverse groups in their classrooms in the form of flags, colorful posters, costuming, foods, and music.  There is absolutely nothing wrong with celebrating the cultures of your diverse students, […]

Big Sky 2018: Six Great Things About Estes Park

Auditors:  We are getting closer to Big Sky of the Rockies, so we thought now would be a good time to start letting you know some great stuff about our conference location this year.  In no particular order, here are 6 great things about Estes Park. Vistas If you love mountain majesty, sweeping views, and […]