Category Archives: PT1 Professional Growth and Contributions

Measure analysis of and reflection on professional growth and its impact on student learning.

Practice: Confession

From: Annan.K.2016.Slow Kingdom Coming.InterVarsity Press

  1. Confess Your Mixed Motives: “God and neighbor, I confess my mixed motives. Help the fruit of my efforts to be beautiful and just.”
  2. Confess Your Desire to Feel Good When You Help: “God and neighbor, I confess that I’m tempted to contribute in ways that make me feel best, not that help most. Help me to slow down to serve my neighbor in the best way possible.
  3. Confess Your Public Gestures: “God and neighbor, I confess I want to be seen as good. Free me to do what is good.”
  4. Confess Your Hero Complex: “God and neighbor, I confess that I claim too much credit. Grow my humility and show me how to rightly give credit to others.”
  5. Confess Your Compassion Fatigue: “God and neighbor, I confess I’m sometimes empty of compassion. Renew me in the deep gladness of the call to work for justice.”
  6. Confess Your Privilege: “God and neighbor, I confess the privileges that benefit me. Help me to give them away again and again.
  7. Confess Your Pain Caused and Received: “God and neighbor, I confess that I have caused pain of, and am hurt by, injustice. Help me to participate in healing for others and myself.
  8. Confess Your Longing for Change: “God and neighbor, I confess my hope is in you and in this kingdom coming.

2021 marks 10 years since I left Microsoft to become a teacher. I confess mixed motives in doing that. I say it was to help students see the potential and possibility of jobs in technology, but sometimes I see it as a way to be honored and respected for that decision. Instead the beautiful and just outcome is helping students experience physics and get information and skills for technology careers.

I confess my desire to see students succeed and know that it was my efforts that helped bring it about. Instead I should take pride in good teaching and in helping all my students see physics or see technology in a new way. Even if none of my students ever get hired by Microsoft, Google, Apple, etc. I will still have value, my efforts will not have been wasted.

I confess my desire to be known as the teacher that ________ (is cool, knows technology, worked outside of teaching, etc. etc.). When people don’t know of me or haven’t heard about me I am slightly wounded. Real goodness is doing what needs to be done when no one is around to see.

I confess my desire to be the hero. I see patterns in my electronic communications or activities where I want to be the clutch-player who had the best idea at the best time which caused real change. True humility would persist in doing the right thing and never calculate on how it is being perceived or how many “likes” your statement got.

I confess my compassion fatigue. Teaching is hard work, in many ways it consumes me more than any work I ever did at Microsoft. That said, when I feel like I am not appreciated, I want to pull back and stop giving. This also shows up when I am tense or short with students that don’t ever deserve that treatment. I confess that it is compassion fatigue that forces me to resentful emotions when I am not appreciated.

I confess that I am a WASP with so much privilege that I have the privilege of not having to calculate or ever reckon with a lack of privilege. I would like to give that privilege away, to employ it in ways that benefit others, but even that desire is fraught with condescensions or patronizing attitudes. So I will re-read Kent Annan’s declaration more often in the coming years, and subscribe to it more confidently.

From Kent Annan, (C) 2016.

I confess that in trying to guide my students to a career in still-mostly-misogynistic physics, or no-way-friendly-to-POC technology jobs, I may be doing more harm than good. I confess that every time I wax nostalgic about science that has been a tool of oppression (race, class, gender) or how great college was (when it cost much less) and the stakes were lower, I am not respecting student wishes to live creative and good lives which they themselves are free to define, free from my criteria. I confess that when I am blind to my privilege or resort to attitudes of the oppressor and owner in subtle but real ways I am causing pain and the not the healing I most fervently desire.

So finally, I confess my longing for change. For a just society that does not overvalue economic gain, I pine. For a job market, education system, research industry, that seeks to be as diverse in the ownership and direction of the means of production as the people that it serves. I long to be replaced by a teacher of color, of another gender, of authority that speaks more to students about what is possible for them based on actual experience rather than theoretical probabilities. And, in that hope I will wait.

Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree. - Martin Luther

Windows 10

I’m still getting used to Windows 8.1 on my laptop. Want to back up a bunch of data before I seriously give it a try. If it has some compelling classroom or instruction scenarios then I will adopt.

Here’s what Directions on Microsoft Said about Windows 10 in a free webinar in May.

But first a little about Windows Server 2016


3.5 in


4.5 in

4.5 in







[When uploading from Word, larger versions of these pictures are *NOT* uploaded.]

Need a Cross-Linked Standards Database, And Crowdsourced

The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) have a representation of the standards that is very technology friendly.  Which got me thinking…

On any given day, I’m writing a lesson that is touching on the following Standards:

In the business, a comprehensive analysis of how one standard compares to another is called a crosswalk.  But, that’s just another document you have to parse.  What you really need is the answer to this question:  “I’m focusing a lesson on XYZ standard, I wonder what other standards I’m potentially covering when I do that?

  • You want to find a related “standard”.  The word “standard” is in quotes because related concepts might not be called that, they might be called any of the following.


  • So let’s use a generic (thanks CCSS) term like statement.  You want to find related statements, which may start off as just a text search for common terms.
  • If search finds common terms the implication is that two statements are related, but you may want to walk the hierarchy of each statement
  • The hierarchy of statements is defined very carefully in a statements source document, i.e. “The PQR Standards”.

Here’s my implementation that would help solve this problem.

1. a relational database that contains the statements, all uniquely identifiable but also with their peculiar numberings, and tagged by what their source document was.

2. a table in the database that contains links between statements.  The link could also contain a rating for the link, e.g. “completely equivalent” to “keyword only”.  This table would be extensible and could grow very large over time.

The crowdsourcing comes in because I can’t as one person completely link CCSS (roughly 1500 “statements”) to NGSS (at least as large) and that would be just two of the many I listed above.  So I would put this database on the internet with links to appropriate forms and reports so that people could use it and add to it and refine the work of others.

Let me know if you think you would use such a tool.  Thanks!

A Notebook for doing Washington Professional Certification (ProCert) in OneNote

In order to keep teaching in the State of Washington—after 3 years of getting to a residency certificate, and before that residency certificate expires (3 more years)—teachers need to upgrade their licenses to Professional Certificates.

The Public Employees Standards Board (PESB) has worked with the State of WA and ETS (Educational Testing Service) to create the Washington ProCert (Professional Certification).The web site for the ProCert is called WaProTeach.

As I embark on this next endeavor, I have captured that web site to a OneNote file.  Most importantly, the worksheets (question prompts, i.e. Entry 1, Entry 2, Entry 3) that must be filled out to complete an application for a ProCert are each in that OneNote Notebook.  I expect that I will plan and draft my responses in OneNote  using these templates before I copy and paste them into the form on the website.  The OneNote also contains the rubrics and other supporting information that should help a candidate write their best ProCert application.

Since the OneNote is currently blank, i.e. before I start filling it out, I thought I would share it with folks that might find it useful.  (I exported it to a OneNote file that you can download and use yourself!) 

Here’s a direct link to the OneNote file (56MB!).







1.  Not to be confused with a National Board Professional Certification which implements National Board Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) on a web site called BoardCertifiedTeachers.  After completing that you are a National Board Certified Teacher (NBCT).

Blogging By Email Draft Email

Test with new ProTeach Categories.

Washington ProTeach Standards and Criteria

What are the Standards & Criteria?

As established by the Professional Educator Standards Board (PESB), the 3 standards and 12 criteria are:

1. The knowledge and skills for effective teaching that ensure student learning by:

  • a. using instructional strategies that make learning meaningful and show positive impact on student learning
  • b. using a variety of assessment strategies and data to monitor and improve instruction
  • c. using appropriate classroom management principles, processes and practices to foster a safe, positive, student-focused learning environment
  • d. designing and/or adapting a challenging curriculum that is based on the diverse needs of each student
  • e. demonstrating cultural sensitivity/competence in teaching and in relationships with students, families and community members
  • f. integrating technology into instruction and assessment
  • g. informing, involving and collaborating with families and community members as partners in each student’s educational process, including using information about student achievement and performance

2. The knowledge and skills for professional development by:

  • a. evaluating the effects of his/her teaching through feedback and reflection
  • b. using professional standards and district criteria to assess professional performance and plan and implement appropriate growth activities
  • c. remaining current in subject area(s), theories, practice, research and ethical practice

3. Professional contributions to the improvement of the school, the community and the profession by:

  • a. advocating for curriculum, instruction and learning environments that meet the diverse needs of each student
  • b. participating collaboratively in school improvement activities and contributing to collegial decision making

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