The Natural Learning Cycle

It’s the perfect time of year to pause and reflect on your personal teaching and learning goals—the hopes and dreams you set when school began. First, let’s take a step back and look at that learning from a big-picture point of view. We know that the most meaningful learning happens as part of a natural, Read More »
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Taking Positive Language Schoolwide

Positive language is a powerful tool for building a calm, safe school climate. The words we use when we talk to students, the intention behind these words, and how we deliver them…
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Changing a School Climate: How Responsive Classroom Helped

A little over a year ago, I became the principal at a school where discipline referrals and staff stress were at all-time highs. Change was clearly needed, and soon. I’d spent the…
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Lively Learning for Professional Development

With increasing demands to meet rigorous curriculum standards and improve the quality of instruction, efficient, productive professional development (PD) and staff meetings are more critical than ever. Too often, though, these sessions…
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Teach Effectively

Ms. Simpson signals for attention and waits a few seconds, until all students are looking at her, before explaining that today they'll be learning a reading strategy called "visualizing." Using second-grade-friendly language,…
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Kensington Avenue Magnet School

Teachers and administrators at Kensington Avenue Magnet School view the Responsive Classroom approach as a foundation upon which they can build. "We look at each new initiative through a Responsive Classroom lens,"…
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Strong Leadership Results in More Effective Teachers

Research has confirmed it: Principals play a crucial role in teachers’ use of Responsive Classroom practices. The study. A recently completed three-year study conducted by the University of Virginia’s Curry School of…
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Chewing on Ideas

Like many educators these days, the teachers in my building have new initiatives added to our plates each year. We need (and want!) to collaborate as a faculty about them, but it's…
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SOAR Schools

At SOAR, a network of public charter schools in Northeast Denver, Responsive Classroom practices are embedded in the daily life of schools, and the approach itself is integrated into the network's core…
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Garfield Elementary

Garfield Elementary, a K–6 public school, began its Responsive Classroom initiative seven years ago. Located in Fairfax County, the sixth-largest public school district in the U.S., Garfield is a Title I school…
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Summer Reading for Teachers

We asked four Responsive Classroom consultants,"What's one great resource for teachers as they look ahead to the next school year?"  Here are their responses:
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Leadership That Inspires Change: Three Keys to Success

When Rita White stepped into her first principalship at an inner-city school in Memphis, Tennessee, she faced daunting challenges. The school of 980 students was on the state’s “needs improvement” list, students…
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What Keeps You Inspired?

In the throes of a winter snow storm, progress reports, parent conferences, state testing and the flu season, imagine what might have inspired these comments:"This was totally worth giving up two weekends!""This…
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“Good teachers are . . .”

Last summer I spent several weeks working with teachers who wanted to learn more about the Responsive Classroom approach. My travels took me from New York City to Winnipeg, Canada! The group…
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RC Works!: Capitol Heights Academy

Michelle Flores, lead teacher at Aspire Capitol Heights Academy in Sacramento, California, contacted us last week to share the news that her school had been designated a California Distinguished Elementary School for 2010.
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How Responsive Classroom Can Support PBIS Initiatives

Recently a teacher contacted me, frustrated over her school's adoption of Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports, or PBIS. Her biggest concern was that PBIS would replace the Responsive Classroom approach to teaching…
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The Responsive Classroom approach can be used to implement PBIS

Did you know?Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS), also known as PBS or Positive Behavior Support, is used in schools nationwide to create a positive climate for learning. The U.S. Department of…
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What’s a Responsive Classroom book that you rely on?

A: Our school finds The First Six Weeks of School incredibly helpful. At the beginning of each year, new and returning staff members meet weekly for a book study on this book.…
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Including All Staff in the Responsive Classroom Journey

When Bristol Elementary School, a public school in a small Vermont town, started its journey of Responsive Classroom implementation a few years ago, it took a two-pronged approach, focusing simultaneously on classroom…
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Rebuilding Community by Reuniting School Staff

“We used to have pictures like these going back for years,” says Peter Harrison, principal of Young School, indicating a pair of large framed photos by the school’s entrance. Each picture shows…
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