Author Archives: Fawn

One-Word Writing Prompts

Years ago at George Middle School (Portland, Oregon), the teachers were allowed to teach something we were passionate about. The class would be twice a week, right after lunch, for just 20 minutes. I was a science teacher at the school and asked if I may teach “writing for writing.” My principal reacted with slightly […]

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Fried Rice

I suspect that half of this story is made up because I don’t remember everything. And why would I want to remember growing up. It’s best not to go there, pretend it never happened, like tearing up a bad photo of yourself. Someone wakes me up each morning, or I wake up by myself. Thank […]

Posted in Shallow Thoughts | 1 Response

Common Denominator

I already wrote about dividing fractions here and here. I use the explanation of “dividing by one” to explain why 5/6 divided by 2/3 is the same as 5/6 times 3/2. But when I was asked recently about how the “common denominator” strategy worked, my muted response was, “Because it does.” I didn’t mean to […]

Posted in Course 1 (6th Grade Math) | Tagged , | 1 Response

Math Worksheets

I often create worksheets for my students, even though every district-adopted math curriculum we’ve had has worksheets for students. I do this for two reasons: I teach differently — sometimes slightly, sometimes quite a bit — than what the curriculum writing team was thinking. There’s a particular structure/scaffold that reflects how I see the content […]

Posted in Course 1 (6th Grade Math), Course 2 (7th Grade Math), Geometry, Math 8 | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Response

Meet Me Here

I snapped this photo on my walk — the beautiful trail is just behind where I live. K.D. Lang was singing Hallelujah in my ears. My worries softened, my anger slipped. Then I thought about my thirty minutes or so with him and smiled. I needed to focus on the small blessings, and there are […]

Posted in Teaching | 1 Response

What’s in a name?

7AM the second day of break and I’m crying. Thanks, Fawn. Thanks a lot. This is beautiful. I’m so sorry for your loss, but glad you know this now. Have you blogged the story of your name already? I would love to hear/read it. ❤️ — Tracy Johnston Zager (@TracyZager) December 22, 2019 I’m one […]

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Six Ways to See Visual Pattern #324

I know you weren’t asking, but I see n overlapping squares. — Hunter Patton (@professorpatton) November 12, 2019   What about you? How do you see the pattern in the tweet above growing? Please take a look before I completely ruin it for you. (So much for my rule of “never tell an answer.”)   […]

Posted in Course 1 (6th Grade Math), Course 2 (7th Grade Math), Math 8, Problem Solving | Tagged , , , , | 2 Responses

Serenity Prayer (and Teaching)

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can, And wisdom to know the difference. Some things teachers cannot change or have little say in: The adults who work at our school The students who show up for class Their parents and home life The […]

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An Update

The young nurse asks how my day is going as she wraps the blood pressure cuff around my arm. I pretend to be relaxing on a yacht to yield low numbers, and the machine beeps 124/74. Dammit, I’ve never been above 120 — the yacht is sinking and death is near. She tells me that […]

Posted in Coaching, Teaching | 2 Responses

A New Position

I just accepted a math TOSA position (grades 5-8) with the Rio School District. I’d spent the last 30 years in the classroom – my school as my second home, my colleagues as my family, my work as my life and identity, but most of all, my students as my children, my babies, my heart. […]

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