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Sunday, July 31, 2011

Notes On Teaching...

That’s the title of the book I received in the mail from the co-author. It is a concise guide of 184 notes in 100 pages that will neatly fit in a backpack or glove box for teachers wondering: “Why they didn’t tell me this stuff before I got the job?”

While targeted for teachers in upper grades, there are more than a few tips that can be used at any level. Some even a substitute teacher can use.

#104Be unexpectedly forgiving
Give a disruptive student’s desk a gentle touch while focusing a smile on his neighbor. Refrain from the tongue-lashing he expects. Your tap will alert him to his own behavior, and your apparent detachment will allow him to save face. He knows you’ve noticed and can correct the situation without fuss. Class goes on. Never throw chalk.

(…I haven’t actually seen any chalk in the last seven years but somehow it sounds better than “Never throw a Dry Erase Marker”)

#18 – Prepare to be unprepared.
(…isn’t this the actual definition of “substitute teacher”? Sounds like it to me)


#105 – Keep extra materials.
Paraphrased: “People forget things. Don’t let it ruin the flow. Request collateral deposit in exchange for borrowed materials to make sure they will be returned.”
(I request a shoe in exchange for borrowed pencils, erasers, crayons, etc. Works every time.)

The book is available at Amazon, probably other book stores and at

If you’re cheap like me and don’t wish to pay for a copy, you can enter a drawing for a free copy of the book here. Just use the comment section to include your first name and email address or send an email to: on or before Aug 15, 2011
One entry per person please.

(Entries via the comments section will not be displayed publicly.) 

Drawing entries to date: 17 (odds are good!)...and the winner is:

Congratulations, Erin from Northridge Calif! She is the winner of a free copy of the book "Notes on Teaching". If you didn't win this time, check back often as there might possibly be giveaways for other stuff.

1 comment:

Sarah Marie said...

HEY! LOVEEEEE your blog! I just got this book as a surprise from my Aunt. I saw it on your blog and mentioned it to her and she got it for me! I got a history degree in 2008 but then went back to school for my teaching cert. when my original idea didn't work out. I have been subbing since Feb. 2009 and am about to start student teaching. Thanks for the recommendation!