Latest Posts


How do I get my immigrant students to want to speak English? Part 2

April 28, 2016 Published by

This series shares lessons I learned during a summer session with middle school students labeled “reluctant” to learn English. Follow this link for Part 1 of the series. Lesson #2: If you want people to “want” to do something different—especially something they consider unpleasant—adding robust joy is a must! In...


Regain your self-worth and pay it forward: A Getting Ahead commencement address

April 19, 2016 Published by

by Betsy Foos The following was inspired by Kelly Bays, Jordan Harmon, Danae Hicks, Cathy Joslin, Roscoe Lofton, Thomas Mathers, Aristel Nopee, Laura Oatman, Justin Shinn, Ashleigh Watson, Rick James Wieland, and L. J. Williams. I would like to thank everyone—family, friends, and community leaders—for supporting my fellow Getting Ahead...


Personal Relationships

April 10, 2016 Published by

@rubyKpayne Eighty-five percent of educators in the United States are female. And for many females, relationships are their lifeblood. For all human beings, male or female, personal relationships seem to be a key stabilizing or destabilizing platform in our lives. If our children are unhappy, we are worried. If our...


How do I get my immigrant students to want to speak English? Part 1

April 4, 2016 Published by

While most immigrant students roll with the punches and learn the necessary materials presented to them, there’s always a small group that needs a little extra attention. Years ago I was asked to teach a course for English language learners (ELLs) during summer school at the middle school level. Our...


2040: How might learning be the same, and how might it be different?

March 26, 2016 Published by

@rubyKpayne O, crystal ball, what do you see? THE SAME … Research shows that all learning is double-coded—emotionally and cognitively. We learn and grow through relationships. Our brains clearly value person-to-person interaction. Early learning will still be important. It is when the human brain is most pliable. Use of assessments...


Once you have “arrived,” will you stay there?

March 19, 2016 Published by

@rubyKpayne All of our lives our resources bases increase and decrease—depending upon external and internal realities. So we may move from emotional wealth to emotional poverty (as I did during my divorce a decade ago), or we may move from financial poverty to wealth … and back and forth. Daniel...


Moving forward with Bridges

March 10, 2016 Published by

Our Bridges Out of Poverty workshop here in Dunnville, Ontario (Canada) was amazing. We were sold out, and well attended with over 200 people; half members of the community and half from agencies (service providers). Really good considering the major snowstorm the day before! Attendees included our local member of...


Grieving often leads to a loss of purpose, motivation, and hope

February 21, 2016 Published by

@rubyKpayne Loss is an unavoidable part of life, but when we encounter loss and grieve, we don’t have to lose hope. Consider the following stories and strategies. A student story I was working with an 18-year-old boy, and I asked him what his life would be like when he was...


What is it about poverty that turns young boys into jobless men?

February 13, 2016 Published by

@rubyKpayne In a recent article for the Washington Post’s Wonkblog, Emily Badger and Christopher Ingraham state the following: “Girls who grow up in poor families are more likely than the boys who grow up with them to work as adults.” “The reversed gender gap also appears only among poor children...


Why doesn’t Ruby Payne say more about race when she talks about poverty?

February 6, 2016 Published by

@rubyKpayne Critics are sometimes bothered that I discuss economic diversity and class without saying much about racial or cultural diversity. In some circles I have even been labeled a racist because I seldom discuss race. Yet, among those same critics, racial and cultural diversity tend to be the focus to...