Lesson of the Day: The Great Depression and Of Mice and Men Research

For an English teacher, there are few things more annoying and soul-breaking than assigning and working on and grading research papers written by 9th graders. I say this only because I was once rushed to the hospital with … [Read more...]

Lesson of the Day: A Great Observational Experience Using Poetry

So the big wigs came to my school last week and I didn't want to embarrass the school, get my administrator in trouble, and end up teaching from a cart next year, so I went to one of my favorite lessons: Poetry Speed … [Read more...]

Lesson of the Day: March Madness Writing Assignment Rubric

Yesterday, I unveiled the March Madness Reading for Information lesson plan along with a March Madness writing assignment. Today, I'm going to toss in a rubric for the 4-paragraph essay. Here are some links to support … [Read more...]

Lesson of the Day: March Madness Meets Common Core Writing and Reading for Information Standards

It was my second year teaching. It was the third Thursday in March. I was watching basketball. My administrator, Ms. Killjoy, thought that the third Thursday in March was a good day to come observe my class. She pulled a pink … [Read more...]

Lesson of the Day: The Hero’s Journey

If you want to "flip" your classroom, feel free to use the Hero's Journey Resource Page. We're gonna head to the almighty Internet for today's lesson of the day. I use it to introduce The Odyssey and hearken back to it … [Read more...]

Common Core Lesson Plan of the Day: Speaking and Listening

I was feeling pretty good about life. My "Cask of Amontillado" common core lesson plans went great. It went so well that several students apologized for having insulted me the week before, fearful that I would bury them … [Read more...]

Hyperbole and Tall-Tales: 10 Chuck Norris Facts for the ELA Classroom

In honor of Chuck Norris' birthday, I give you some fine examples of hyperbole with an element of tall-tale. Chuck Norris has a vacation home on the sun. If you put a straitjacket on Chuck Norris, the straitjacket goes … [Read more...]

Montresor’s Revenge in “The Cask of Amontillado”

While you were trying to figure out exactly why Montresor was so upset with Fortunato, Montresor was monomaniacally plotting revenge. Here's a step by step account of his perfect revenge. Prepares and plans everything in … [Read more...]

Nevada Schools Worst in Nation at Giving Students Chance for Success


For many teachers in the Silver State, constantly being told that your state is the worst in education can be somewhat demoralizing, so as yet another report comes out about how crappy Nevada's schools are, there's bound to … [Read more...]

A Quick and Easy Common Core Writing Assignment


My good friend and award winning yearbook editor Bill Tobler hounded me for about six weeks over some silly writing assignment he wanted my students to do for inclusion in this year's edition of the FHS yearbook. He gave … [Read more...]