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This post was originally shared in an email on February 26, 2021. If you would like to receive my next email update, you can sign up here.

Last week I shared the third video from the Rethinking Intervention series, built around the big takeaway that students learn best from content that helps them understand and change the world.

This week I am excited to present our video on Takeaway 4: Moving forward into new content with support will advance learning more than stopping and going back. Here is a reflection and discussion guide.

(Okay, watch the video before you read…


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This post was originally shared in an email on February 19, 2021. If you would like to receive my next email update, you can sign up here.

Last week I shared the second video from the Rethinking Intervention series, built around the big takeaway that what teachers expect of their students shapes what students expect of themselves. Thanks to those who shared it and who offered me their feedback and reactions.

This week I am excited to present our video on Takeaway 3: Students engage and learn best from work that is challenging, relevant to their lives, and helps them…


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This post was originally shared in an email on February 12, 2021. If you would like to receive my next email update, you can sign up here.

Last week we shared the first video from the Rethinking Intervention series, built around the big takeaway that relationships and learning are inseparably connected. Thanks to everyone who reached out to share your reactions; I was glad to hear it gave people hope and energy in hard times.

This week I bring you the video for the second big takeaway: What teachers expect of their students shapes what students expect of themselves. …


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This post was originally shared in an email on February 5, 2021. If you would like to receive my next email update, you can sign up here.

As previewed last week, our Rethinking Intervention project led to 40 powerful conversations around six major themes. None of the themes are surprising or new but they help bring us back to some essential educator wisdom, confirmed by research and brought to life through stories. …


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This post was originally shared in an email on January 29, 2021. If you would like to receive my next email update, you can sign up here.

Since the start of school closures — maybe since the start of my educational career — I’ve been desperate to understand, What do we know works? What truths can we hold on to? Recently I’ve been getting questions like these from school leaders multiple times a week, in different forms: How should we think about using precious money and time? What is the most important focus for professional learning? If nothing else, what…


This post was originally shared in an email on January 15, 2021. If you would like to receive my next email update, you can sign up here.

School and country inform each other. Events in our country affect our schools and events in our schools shape our country. Therefore, as I reflect on the events at the Capitol last week, I have been thinking about the ways education may be part of both the cause and the solution.

A colleague described the events at the Capitol to me and my team as “a failing of civics instruction and social-emotional education”…


This post was originally shared in an email on December 18, 2020. If you would like to receive my next email update, you can sign up here.

As we wind down 2020, I cannot put a bow on this year. I don’t know the five things we should all learn from 2020 because I am still in it and processing the journey.

But I am ending the year thinking a lot about how so many things can be true at the same time. We can have missed out on a lot of learning and be overwhelmed by how much we…


This post was originally shared in an email on December 4, 2020. If you would like to receive my next email update, you can sign up here.

As COVID cases climb, I send you and your families wishes for health and safety.

This week, I have been thinking a lot about principals. My recent conversations with principals are filling me with empathy, worry, and wonder. …


This post was originally shared in an email on November 13, 2020. If you would like to receive my next email update, you can sign up here.

Thank you to everyone who shared my op-ed a few weeks ago. As we process the results of the election and confront the challenges we face, the importance of authentic and respectful discourse in community feels more relevant than ever.

The principals and superintendents I have talked to these past few weeks are sitting at the intersection of total exhaustion from nine months of very hard leadership, deep concern about the near future…


I’m convinced that how schools reconcile the events of 2020 will either hobble our country or usher in a new chapter of progress. Can we handle the debate?

Let’s Fight About the Future of Public Education was originally published by Chalkbeat on October 30, 2020. Sign up for their newsletters here: ckbe.at/newsletters

Early this summer, I watched school boards and school system leaders face tough choices about when and how to reopen school buildings. They sent surveys to families to gather input and formed “reopening committees” that negotiated decisions about masks, virtual options, and staffing plans. I sat in on several committees, across state lines, as an instructional leadership consultant.

I found inspiration in many of these reopening conversations. I was impressed by the ways I saw teachers…

Emily Freitag

Instruction Partners CEO, former AssistCommish for TDOE, library lover, Sunday afternoon chef and head of the Jan, Owen and Liam fan club.

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