Top Five Radical Reads of 2011

It's hard to believe that another year of writing here on the Radical is coming to a close, y'all.  Every time that I sit down behind the keyboard and start clicking away, I keep my fingers crossed that I'll churn out bits that SOMEONE will find useful.

Having spent the better part of the past 7 years learning from others who are freely giving their thoughts and ideas away online, being useful is important to me. 

I want to do my part — in my own simple way — to give back.

That's why I wanted to take a minute to spotlight the five Radical reads that were viewed the most times in the past year.  Doing so will put the content that others found the most provocative in one place.  It's like crowdsourced filtering, right?

So here they are:

Writing Student Friendly Learning Goals (10,811 page views)

Easily one of my favorite bits on the Radical, this piece introduces readers to a specific process for converting balky state objectives written in #eduspeak into language that kids might actually understand.  I love that it topped the list of popular pages for 2011 simply because it was written in 2008!

#stayingpower

Is REAL Formative Assessment Even Possible? (4,426 views)

This bit is deeply personal.  It details my current struggles to implement meaningful formative assessment into my own classroom practices — and I'll be honest with you: I STILL don't think formative assessment is doable, no matter how unpopular that thinking might be.  Not with 130 students, a massive curriculum, and a dearth of digital tools to automate the collection of data. 

#sadtruth

Using Twitter in High School Classrooms (4,105 views)

Having spent the better part of the past three years learning in Twitter, I am completely jazzed that this bit — which outlines specific ways that Twitter is being used to enhance teaching and learning in high school classrooms — has been so popular. 

#twitterules

Why are We STILL Wasting Money on Whiteboards? (3,725 views)

One of the things that I'm probably best known for is my antipathy towards interactive whiteboards.  I see them as a complete waste of money and a sign of the kinds of irresponsible spending practices that are grinding schools into the ground.  This bit is my most recent rant about the flippin' things. 

#cantstandem

Rethinking Grading Policies in a PLC (3,651 views)

I love this post because it blends two themes that I really care about: Responsible grading practices and collaborative work between colleagues.  It tackles the specific steps that learning teams need to take together if they're ever going to professionally report on student progress to parents.

#mustread

Hope you find these bits valuable — and hope that you'll keep stopping by to push my thinking.  Your feedback matters more than you really know!

#respect