Learning by Teaching: Experiential Education in Action for New Educators

At the heart of Crane Country Day School’s mission is experiential education. Teachers are challenged with creating thought-provoking experiential lessons, which often include culminating projects and events. Similar to educators at any institution, creating successful curriculum is constantly balanced with time management and manpower. To enrich the learning environment at Crane School, more educators were…

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Adult Learning That Lasts

At the CATDC, we deeply believe in the power of bringing people together to share ideas and reflect on their learning experiences. These foundational values and practices are steeped in research and can be most vividly seen in a report compiled by The Learning Institute. Over the years, I have given a great deal of…

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Seizing the Day Inside and Outside of the Classroom: The Diamond Curriculum

Santa Barbara Middle School offers students in grades 6-9 a profound educational experience, guiding young people as they transition to adolescence. Through ancient traditions and rigorous academics combined with bicycling and expeditions in the outdoors, SBMS aims to teach compassion, kindness, and self-knowledge and solidify a foundation for a child’s self-esteem, self-confidence, and sense of…

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Supporting Great Teachers to Stay

As a former Dean of Faculty at an independent school and now Executive Director of the California Teacher Development Collaborative (CATDC), I know well the energy and resources that go into recruiting, hiring, and onboarding new faculty. Given the shortage of teachers in California as well as greater attrition and churn, I have been giving…

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Our Growing Team

The CATDC is thrilled to announce that our team is growing! We have hired two Associate Director of Programs to support our program and membership growth in Southern and Northern California. We have also brought on our Central California consultant, Josie Bahedry, to work with us in an ongoing capacity as our Central California Program…

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Healthy Sexuality Education

I became the “consent lady” by default. A health educator for 25 years, I value all aspects of wellness–sex education included. While developing the Health program at the Urban School in San Francisco, my colleague and fellow health education teacher, Jenn, and I were both juggling parenting commitments and child care, and trying to create…

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A Case for Ongoing Professional Development

The CATDC’s Ongoing Programs, series of 3-5 meetings led by local educators, are some of our most agile and responsive professional development offerings and the foundation of our unique approach to growing capacity in California independent schools. Easy access to digital and print resources and online courses make continuing education within reach at all times,…

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Image of the Child and the Reggio Emilia Approach

Last spring I was invited by New School-West—as a parent—to travel to Reggio Emilia, Italy, on a Five State Educator’s Tour with the entire faculty and one other parent. I have been a parent at The New School-West Preschool for seven consecutive years. One might call me a New School-West expert—not necessarily for raising 3,4,…

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Maintaining Dignity, Integrity, and Community in the Discipline Process

The word discipline originates from the Latin root discere which means “to learn” and forms other derivatives like disciplina which means “instruction” and discipulus which means “disciple or pupil.” At Turning Point School, the disciplinary process in middle school is rooted in the intention of “learning” rather than “punishment” and lends itself best to personal…

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The Importance of Hiring Well

Head-Royce, along with many Bay Area Independent Schools, prioritizes hiring a top-notch, diverse faculty in order to support our mission, ensure effective teaching and learning, and meet the needs of our student body. This priority is corroborated by trends observed by NAIS, and the fact that over 40 schools from California sent representatives to the…

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Changing Lives Through Collaboration

Creative collaboration with teachers in the service of student learning has been a deep current running through my career. As Executive Director of the CATDC, learning with and from other educators has become not only a passion, but one of my primary job responsibilities.

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Rethinking Teacher Evaluation in Independent Schools

Working in schools is a vulnerable act. Every day can feel like a high-stakes performance review in front of an audience of young evaluators: performing effective planning, organization, pedagogy, relationship management, flexibility, patience, community building, knowledge of human psychology and all the additional skills of being an educator. It’s no wonder then that when teachers hear they’re about to be evaluated, anxiety sets in and amygdala hijack takes hold.

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Of Bake Sales, Menstrual Pads, and the Oscars

The Girls Learn International club at Oakwood School recently won an Oscar for their documentary short, Period. End of Sentence. Learn more about the movement for menstrual equality and the group of students that brought global awareness to this important topic.

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