Tallying Your Wins: Hug – Push – Hug

by Sarah Guedry

Yesterday, my own fourth grade daughter handed me her “argumentative essay” to read before she turned it in. My middle school teacher-eyes, with their sky-high expectations, immediately saw about 20 errors I would have loved for her to fix. But, not wanting to repeat the tears I’d brought her to the day before, I remembered how to be a teacher and used the “hug, push, hug” strategy with my daughter/student.  Continue reading “Tallying Your Wins: Hug – Push – Hug”

TRTW in the Remote Classroom, Part 2: Bringing TRTW to Life Online

by Nancy Motley

I know that we are all in a steep learning curve right now, myself included! Interestingly, I am immersed in learning how to transform the very routine I created into a format suitable for remote learning. I am referring to Talk, Read, Talk, Write, which is a literacy-based routine for teaching just about anything. Luckily for me, there are many teachers who have already blazed this trail. One such teacher is Alma Juarez, who teaches ESL classes at Frisco High School. She generously shared her work with me so that I can share it with you. (She also wanted me to explain that her process is evolving each week as she and her students learn what works best for them.) Before we dive into Alma’s sample lesson, let’s build a little background. Continue reading “TRTW in the Remote Classroom, Part 2: Bringing TRTW to Life Online”

Supporting Literacy at Home: 7 Steps for Parents

by Jordan Greer and Curstin Ploch, Frisco ISD

In the ESL world, we always advocate that language-rich instruction is good for all students, not just ELs. In our current situation, it is not just ELs who are experiencing disruptions in their lives. Everyone is struggling with isolation, disruption to routine, and a variety of stressors that normally do not impact their learning. For example, a student who does not typically need oral administration may need linguistic support during an assessment because these stressors have raised the affective filter for reasons other than language proficiency. With parents now playing an even larger role in their children’s education, they themselves may need additional support to be able to support their children during remote learning.  Continue reading “Supporting Literacy at Home: 7 Steps for Parents”

TRTW in the Remote Classroom, Part 1: Inspired Collaboration

by Nancy Motley

I met Alma Juarez and her team for the first time via a Zoom meeting on April 23, 2020, when they allowed me to crash their weekly one-hour PLC (professional learning community) session. I have to tell you, it was the most inspiring 56 minutes I’ve had in a really long time.  Continue reading “TRTW in the Remote Classroom, Part 1: Inspired Collaboration”

Cultivating Relationships Remotely

by Dr. Lora Beth Escalante

Cultivating Student Relationships Remoely

As teachers around the nation (and globe) are navigating teaching online, we have the opportunity to reflect on our strengths as educators. The relationships we worked hard to form from August to February must now be maintained virtually, and the most effective way to get started is to identify what was going well in our classroom before we were oh so rudely interrupted by COVID-19. Continue reading “Cultivating Relationships Remotely”


by Emily Francis

It doesn’t happen as often as it should, but when it does, it is the most amazing feeling one can experience. That moment when you’re reading a book and you see your life and family experiences reflected on every single page. That moment when you see text and images intertwine on a page to bring forth cultural validation and acceptance. That moment when you close the book and cry tears of happiness because you realize that stories are so much deeper than you ever thought.  Continue reading “Sometimes…”

What Does Sheltered Instruction Look Like for eLearning?

by Elise White Diaz

Frisco ISD Post

Three weeks ago the world of education was turned upside down. As they prepared to return from spring break, teachers and students found an unexpected message in their inboxes: you will not be returning to the classroom. There was no mention of how long this uncertainty would last, nor what “online learning” would look like (no one knew the answer to either of those questions … yet). Many school districts rose to the occasion like champions and did the unthinkable: developed a whole new system of eLearning in about 48 hours. But a certain group of students was left in the lurch.  Continue reading “What Does Sheltered Instruction Look Like for eLearning?”

Could Teaching English Learners Be One of the Secrets to Great Educational Leadership?

Sketchnote: Leading Through Language

by Dr. Stephen Fleenor

Author’s Note: While I have been planning this blog post for months, the recent COVID-19 outbreak and resulting upending of our schools makes this post all the more timely. The takeaways from this post, which are more important in the COVID-19 outbreak than ever, are: communication with our students and teachers needs to be clear, consistent, and reinforced, and teacher voice is more valuable than ever in crafting new solutions in an ever-changing world.Sketchnote: Leading Through Language Continue reading “Could Teaching English Learners Be One of the Secrets to Great Educational Leadership?”

Holding ALL Students Accountable to the Learning When You’re Teaching and Learning Remotely

by Valentina Gonzalez

Remote or distance learning can be described as learning environments where teachers and students are physically separated. Many educators in the United States and in the world no longer have to imagine what remote or distance learning is like, because they are living it. This situation is challenging, to say the least. 

Remote teaching and learning won’t look the same everywhere. It varies among states, districts, and classrooms. If this is your first experience with remote teaching and your students’ first experiences with remote learning, you probably have some hurdles to face and bumps in the road to overcome.  Continue reading “Holding ALL Students Accountable to the Learning When You’re Teaching and Learning Remotely”