The Best Education in the World?

Both Cuba and Finland have created effective educational systems based upon the simple idea that every child would have free access to a good public school. In both cases, this idea and its implementation came out of an urgent need to for the nation to survive and thrive, economically, politically and culturally. Schooling in Cuba… Continue reading The Best Education in the World?


How to Practice Poetry Writing with Children

Writing poetry with children is delightful for all involved in the process. Step one: read poetry to children. Lots. Step two: give them the guidelines. Poetry does not have to rhyme. Poetry may rhyme. Sometimes. A few of my favorite types of poems to teach to children and teens include: haiku, limrick, cinquain, color poems,… Continue reading How to Practice Poetry Writing with Children


How to be a Mindful Teacher

At the beginning of my first year of teaching, I hung a sign on the wall of my bilingual third-grade classroom that said, “En este salón, todos son maestros y todos son estudiantes.” In this room, everyone is a teacher and everyone is a student. Without realizing it, I was voicing the philosophy behind the… Continue reading How to be a Mindful Teacher

The New Story

How Mainstream Schooling Burns Teachers Out

Or, Why the Status Quo is Not Sustainable "In public schools, the educator is backed by an entire system of demands, inducements, punishments, measuring devices, and packaging of knowledge: testing, grades, standards, curriculum units, textbooks, psychological and medical labels, detention slips, and much, much more." ~ Ron Miller Teaching is, hands down, the most challenging… Continue reading How Mainstream Schooling Burns Teachers Out

Education, Guatemala, Michelle's Memoir, Mindfulness

Sweet Rewards

I am a yoga teacher; I've been teaching yoga and mindfulness for almost ten years. This is certainly my life's purpose, but it doesn't pay the bills. Hence, I am also a school teacher; I have just finished my 5th year of school teaching. I used to teach little kids, now I teach teenagers. It's… Continue reading Sweet Rewards

Education, Michelle's Memoir, Writings

Why I Teach

Teaching is, hands down, the hardest job I’ve ever had (and I've had a lot). Yet the rewards of working with children every day, seeing them grow and grasp new ideas, far outweigh the stress. Less than a year after quitting my advertising career and completing a whirlwind teacher certification program, I stood before twenty-two… Continue reading Why I Teach