Posts by Claire Pentecost:

Support to Mitigate Test Pressures

December 6, 2012 Published by

By Claire Pentecost Teachers and administrators are under intense pressure to improve test scores, and we face conflicting goals. On one hand, implementing technology and moving toward a paperless classroom is a worthy goal. Students are motivated by using technology; they are more prepared for real-world research and work, and…

Musings at the End of Year Two

June 15, 2012 Published by

The end of each school year is a time for reflection, and for me, I wonder if I applied the lessons I learned in my first year of teaching. I see some new areas where I need to grow now that I have a second year of experience. Also, my…

How to Improve Educational Impact with Faster-Paced Curriculum

September 6, 2011 Published by

I think I have two issues: I haven’t made the content relevant to the students, and we are dealing with some abstract concepts.

Wrapping Up the School Year–Improved Test Scores and more

June 6, 2011 Published by

By Claire Pentecost Final exams are all that remain of my first school year. Well, final exams, packing up, and end-of-year rituals and rites are left. This year I taught seventh-grade language arts in a Title I school. My Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) test results finally came…

Preliminary Results Indicate Improvement on TAKS

May 12, 2011 Published by

After all the practice and question-writing, my students did improve test scores, especially in critical thinking skills. I do not have their Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) scores back yet, but we held a mock TAKS a little over a week before the real thing. Data from January…

Question-Writing Strategy

April 5, 2011 Published by

As my students prepare to take the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) reading test, I decided to take another stab at the question-writing strategy. In addition to regular language arts, I also teach a TAKS reading remediation class. I have attempted this strategy with them and have not…

Relationships in the First-Year Teacher’s Classroom

March 5, 2011 Published by

As my first year of teaching moves forward, I am beginning to see the impact of relationships I have with my students. We all know from personal experience and moving stories we’ve heard that a relationship between a child with few resources and a teacher or coach who can provide…

Planning Backward: One Step to Success

February 1, 2011 Published by

I began teaching this school year as a career-changer. I didn’t have education training in college, but after talking with several experienced teachers, I decided to enroll in an alternative certification program and look for a teaching job. The segment of teachers like me has been rapidly increasing. A+ Texas…