What sets me apart from other teacher trainers

What sets me apart from other teacher trainers

I’m a recently retired National Board Certified 7-12 classroom teacher of social studies/history (including interdisciplinary work with science). Early in my teaching career we had overhead projectors, one teletype with an Internet connection that had to be checked out and wheeled into our rooms, and chalkboards! In my final years in the classroom, I used a remotely operated SMART board, had constant Internet connection, and my students did their written work online.

Much has changed over the years, but I’ve found that the most important things endure; kids are still kids, and to help them grow we must engage them with deep thoughtful lessons that utilize active teaching strategies.  Creating a classroom culture of engagement, enjoyment, and thinking are the foundations for effective instruction. 

I do not give motivational speeches, nor work with teachers outside of my area of expertise (social studies, history and science). Rather my work is with social studies and science teachers on research-based practice-proven teaching strategies that will engage and deepen the learning of their students.

When I’m working with teachers from the same school, my preference is for teaching my strategies within the school. To augment my instruction, I will take a teacher’s unit and rework their chosen lesson with these strategies and teach the lesson in their classroom. In working with groups of teachers from various schools, I utilize my own lessons. With both, the learning is experiential. Contact will be maintained with teachers via online discussion on my website, and in follow-up training as requested.

I took Michael Yell’s NCSS workshop on Strategies and Tools for Exceeding Expectations of the Common Core and C3. Mike is a collector of the best strategies and tools that teachers can use to be the most effective in their classrooms. And more importantly, Mike opens a space of experiential learning putting teachers in the place of students to experience these strategies and tools firsthand, and then opens up discussion for how we could imbue these strategies and tools with our own unique teaching style and have them work for us. Mike reveals the magic of teaching and makes us all magicians.

Laura Pascal

Secondary social studies teacher