Professional Development Services

Professional Development Sessions

Mentoring New Teachers (Full-Day Suggested)

I will use situations from my manuscript (Schoolhouse Dilemmas: Scenarios for Mentoring Secondary Teachers) to guide first-year teachers (and their mentors). They will develop problem-solving skills that follow five basic principles for desirable outcomes. They will engage in discussion activities and learn tips in six arenas of teaching: working with students; making methodological and curricular choices; negotiating the schoolhouse as a workplace; working with parents; developing classroom management and discipline; and creating sound assessment and grading policies.

Principles for Writing Instruction

For teachers in any academic discipline, I will teach ten research based principles for writing instruction. Attendees will learn principles divided among best practices in teaching writing as a process, in creating writing situations, and in developing a powerful disposition as a teacher of writing. After this session, teachers should be able to help students become more motivated and more proficient writers for any mode of composition.

Teaching Argumentative Writing

I will demonstrate how to teach three types of arguments: arguments of fact, arguments of judgment, and arguments of policy. Attendees will learn how to write strong prompts, how to help students decode prompts, and how to teach students essential points in drafting logical arguments. They will gain tips for teaching the skills that students will to write effectively for most classes in the humanities and for state writing assessments.

Teaching Reflective Writing

In a half-day session for language arts teachers, I will demonstrate how to teach ten key points in writing a reflective essay. Attendees will learn how to help students develop ideas and expand them into meaningful essays for any audience. They will also learn the finer points that distinguish a strong reflective piece from a forgettable narrative and from a vague exposition. The teachers will also develop topics, outline, and draft their own reflections. In this session, teachers will improve their own writing and their ability to diagnose and suggest content revisions in the writing of their students.

Teaching Rhetorical Analysis

While a vital session for new AP English Language and Composition teachers, this staff development opportunity is relevant for all high school English and history teachers. In response to recent curricular changes, teachers will need to learn how to teach students how to analyze writing and speeches. Attendees will learn keys to teaching students to unlock rhetorical situations and to navigate communication acts. They will learn and develop their ability to teach terminology used to describe diction, syntax, and structure. These attendees will be able to help students become better close readers, engage in meaningful discussion of prose, and compose focused analyses of writing and speeches.

Teaching Synthesis

For teachers of any course with a writing or research element, I will demonstrate how to teach students to write better synthesis papers. Attendees will learn techniques for guiding students to evaluate sources and to combine pertinent information from a variety of sources. They will learn how to teach students how to create thesis statements based upon informed opinion and backed by relevant evidence. Attendees will also learn how to craft their own synthesis topics for use in their classrooms.

Teaching Classic Novels and Plays

For language arts teachers, I will demonstrate how to create a meaningful unit for any “classic.” I will use my own unit for The Great Gatsby as a sample, so attendees would benefit from a basic knowledge of this Fitzgerald classic. They will learn methods and activities for placing a work into historical and rhetorical context. They will also learn methods for selecting prime passages for close reading and how to develop their students’ close reading skills. They will learn methods for introducing vocabulary from the novel or play and for teaching literary terminology. Finally, they will learn how to draft writing prompts that require students to use higher-order thinking, as well as how to prepare students to respond to these prompts.

Sessions Rates

Ninety Minute Session.: $250.00*

Half-Day Session (four hours): $500.00*

Full-Day Session (seven hours): $800.00*

*plus travel and accommodations, if required