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Teaching on Solid Ground
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Teaching on Solid Ground
Nuance, Challenge, and Technique for the Emerging Teacher

Foreword by Martin J. and Patricia Koldyke



© 2006 | 176 pages | Corwin

Find your footing and step into your future as a grounded teacher!

"I put down the book feeling proud to be a teacher."
-Sharon Elin, NBCT
Chickahominy Middle School, Hanover County, VA

"A book I will refer to often, as well as use for the teachers I mentor."
-Patricia Eggers, NBCT
Brown Deer School District, Glendale, WI

"Offers intellect, relevant statistics, human examples, teacher stories, witty analogies, practical solutions, and most of all, hope for those at any point in their teaching career."
-Sarah Earle, NBCT
Hampton High School, VA  

Do you feel grounded at the "big desk" or are you still searching for your comfort zone? Join best-selling author Dominic Belmonte as he explores the essentials of instruction, curriculum, and classroom management. Using his trademark humor and encouraging style, and always keeping a clear-eyed focus on the rewards of teaching, the author discusses:

  • 15 ways to master classroom pacing, tone, undertone, mood, and behavior
  • 5 sample lessons using Socratic Seminar, inquiry science, Magic Math Box, and more
  • Reflective approaches to important challenges, including high-stakes tests, bridging the achievement gap, and helping students deal with tragedy
 
Foreword by Martin J. and Patricia Koldyke
 
Acknowledgments
 
About the Author
 
1: Becoming and Celebrating Yourself as a Grounded Teacher: Five Requisite Precepts
Precept 1: Recognition and Belief That the Quality of Your Work is a Matter of Life and Death to Your Students  
Precept 2: Immunity From the Toxic Cynicism of Your Colleagues  
Precept 3: Recognition That Your Words Matter  
Precept 4: Recognition That You Must Have a Reason to Be in Front of Your Students  
Precept 5: Give Them Hope, Rather Than Love  
 
2: Fifteen Indicators of a Grounded Teacher: Classroom Nuances and Other Cues
First Indicator: Avoiding Classroom Wheel Spinning  
Second Indicator: Being Comfortable With Time and With Questions  
Third Indicator: Attending the Lecture’s Funeral  
Fourth Indicator: Mastering the Art of Asking Questions  
Fifth Indicator: Planning Student Group Work Carefully  
Sixth Indicator: Being a Non-Contributor to Classroom Disarray  
Seventh Indicator: Knowing Speed Kills Everywhere, Even in the Classroom  
Eighth Indicator: Avoiding the Rudderless Class  
Ninth Indicator: Keeping an Ear to the Tone of a Classroom  
Tenth Indicator: Beware of Your Own Undertone!  
Eleventh Indicator: Avoiding Topic or Grade as Threat  
Twelfth Indicator: Using Compliments Adroitly  
Thirteenth Indicator: Prodding Gently (but Prodding Nonetheless!)  
Fourteenth Indicator: Holding Students Responsible for Their Own Learning  
Fifteenth Indicator: Holding Students Responsible for Their Own Behavior: “We Don’t Baby Our Babies Anymore”  
 
3: Model Techniques of Exceptionally Grounded Teachers
The Socratic Seminar Method for High School English Classes: Exceptionally Grounded Teacher Tom Anstett, Lincoln-Way East High School, Frankfort, IL  
Getting Students Hooked Through the Power of Inquiry Science: Exceptionally Grounded Teacher Jim Effinger, Naperville North High School, Naperville, IL  
Presenting Poetry To the Recalcitrant and Suspicious High School Student: The "Search for the Central Experience" Method  
The Magic Math Box and Elementary Math Approach: Exceptionally Grounded Teacher Sr. Raeleen Sweeney, PBVM, Golden Apple Foundation, Chicago, IL  
Literacy Travels: Exceptionally Grounded Teacher Jim Sorensen, Chippewa Middle School, Des Plaines, IL  
Lessons in Loving Science and Children: Exceptionally Grounded Teacher Carolyn "Mama C" Cyriaque, Golden Apple Foundation, Chicago, IL  
 
4: Further Nuances and Challenges for the Grounded Teacher
When Tragedy Affects the Classroom  
Teacher Burnout: What It Is, Why It Is, Why You Must Combat It, or Leave Teaching Now  
State and Federal Testing and the Fight for a Teacher's Soul  
Bridging the Achievement Gap With Your Minority Students: A Conversation With Gloria Harper and a Summary of the National Study Group for the Affirmative Development of Academic Ability  
 
Epilogue: A Teacher's Poem, the Subjects of Fear and Resilience
 
References
 
Index

"Provides motivation and a sense of commitment even to a veteran teacher (me!)...a book I will refer to often, as well as use for the teachers I mentor."

Patricia Eggers
NBCT, Brown Deer School District, Glendale, WI

"Offers encouraging, uplifting advice and support to help teachers remember the purpose and importance of their profession...The examples and vignettes offer a wealth of fresh, energizing techniques, along with ideas to pump life into stale and chalky routines. Thanks for the inspiration!"

Sharon Elin
NBCT, Early Adolescent Social Studies, Chickahominy Middle School, Hanover County, VA

"Provides a resource for developing teachers to reflect on their current practices and craft, identify areas of strength and needed change, and provides a beacon for knowing when they are becoming master teachers."

Jayne Englert-Burns
NBCT, Pine Crest Elementary, Silver Spring, MD

"I put down the book feeling proud to be a teacher...someone understands that I care more about my students than about politics, money, or prestige, and that my focus on students has inherent worth far beyond a paycheck!"

Sharon Elin
NBCT, Early Adolescent Social Studies, Chickahominy Middle School, Hanover County, VA

 "Offers intellect, relevant statistics, human examples, teacher stories, witty analogies, practical solutions, and most of all, hope for those at any point in their teaching career...what I am most impressed with is that the author does not continually blame the system or others but gently reminds us, chapter after chapter, that just as our students come to the pivotal point of taking responsibility for learning, we as teachers must look inward and reflect upon our responsibility to really, really do the teaching."

Sarah Earle, NBCT
Hampton High School, Hampton, VA

"Belmonte offers advice on how to become a grounded teacher by advocating discussions instead of lectures and profiling the techniques of teaching veterans."

Class Notes, Spring 2006
Missouri State Teachers Association

"Teaching on Solid Ground really is an overall ‘reader friendly’ reference and guide for becoming an ideal and appropriate teacher, very strongly recommended to all teachers, new and experienced, for its exclusive ability to relate to its readers and its deeply accurate reasoning for taking its recommended approaches."

Wisconsin Bookwatch, April 2006

"Both new and experienced teachers will enjoy Belmonte's humorous and heartfelt reflections on the rewards of teaching. The author focuses on 15 ways to master classroom pacing, outlines 5 sample lessons, and suggests reflective approaches to testing, bridging the achievement gap, and other challenges."

Curriculum Connections, Fall 2006
School Library Journal
Key features
  •  A sequel to the author's acclaimed first book Teaching From the Deep End
  •  Covers 15 instructional topics, including student learning groups, instructional pacing, open-ended questioning, grading, motivators, classroom tone and undertone, and more
  • Analyzes 5 sample lessons by master teachers in core curriculum areas to illustrate the book's teaching topics in action.
  • Covers challenges likely to be encountered, including state and federal testing, achievement gaps, classroom tragedies, and more.  
  •  Emphasizes resilience and the rewards of the teaching profession.
  •  Ideal resource for teacher induction, mentoring, and support programs.

Sample Materials & Chapters

Foreword

Chapter 1


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ISBN: 9781412924634
$27.95

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