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TeacherPop serves up the real corps member experience daily. Corps members, alumni and staff from all around the country share resources, news and insider experience -- pop in and check it out.

The Power of Respecting Teachers

By: Marielle Emet (Baltimore ’06)

You know that scene in Mr. Holland’s Opus when he walks into the auditorium and suddenly realizes it is all about him? I had that moment. This past November I was told by my principal we were having an assembly with a lot of bigwigs to celebrate recent test scores. I created an alternative schedule, and grumbled about how this was going to throw off my unit plan. And then, about 10 minutes into the assembly (where I was mainly focused on getting a few key scholars to track the speaker) it turned out this was all a ruse: this was an assembly to give me the Milken Educator Award.

There were powerful people, quotes from kids, TV cameras, and a big check. I was in shock, people kept asking me how I felt and I was honestly (for the first time in my life, I think) at a loss for words. I was so surprised (this is not an award you apply for, and I didn’t even know I was in the running) but also in shock that my school family had done so much just to honor me, a teacher. After the camera crews left and I got back into the classroom–that was when the impact of this award took an unexpected turn. 

Time to #sharethelove!

Teachers, tell your friends and family to Share the Love today! All they need to do is send you a care package and, before popping it in the mail, take a photo of it for Pinterest or Instagram with the hashtags #tfa and #sharethelove. TFA will feature your goodies on its Pinterest page or in an upcoming newsletter.


By |February 14th, 2014|Take a Break|0 Comments|

The Best Valentine’s Day Ideas for Your Classroom

(Photo credit: Pete Repka)

(Photo credit: Pete Repka)

Roses and chocolates are fine for most people, but you’re a teacher—your Valentine’s Day treats are going to be creative as well as delicious, and your crafts will be the craftiest around. Need some ideas to get you started? Here are TeacherPop’s favorite V-Day suggestions for letting your kids know how much they’re loved:

There’s more—much, much more—on TeacherPop’s Valentine’s Day Pinterest board. And if you need a little reading to put you in a (pragmatically) romantic state of mind, check out:

You Said It: How Will You Recharge During Break?

(Photo credit: Simon Cocks)

(Photo credit: Simon Cocks)

The holiday break is almost here—so what will corps members do to relax? We asked, and the top answers include reading and spending time with family and friends. We’d expect nothing less.

Over the holiday/winter break, I’m planning to recharge by going to Jamaica with my family for almost a week! I’m definitely going to feel recharged after that. — Kelly Harper, Houston ’12

Go home and visit my family, go out to eat a lot, and get ahead in planning. — Brittany Watts, New Orleans ’12

I am going to go spend time with friends, family, and friends that are family. — Laura, Dallas Fort-Worth ’12

By |December 17th, 2013|Take a Break|0 Comments|

You Said It: Classroom Holiday Celebrations

(Photo credit: Kelly Sikkema)

(Photo credit: Kelly Sikkema)

When the holidays hit, some teachers deck the halls and break out the hot chocolate. Others have to sneak in a bit of fun around tests. We checked in with corps members across the country to see how they’ll be celebrating the holidays in their classrooms.

I’m writing christmas cards to every student in my class and including a picture of our class. — Andrew Clay, Southwest Ohio ’12

We are going to have a group celebration with cookies, juice, and telling stories about our favorite thing about the holidays. Students will also be able to color a sheet with the prompt “My favorite holiday memory is…” — Alexandra Carlson, Kansas City ’12

We are going to be celebrating a variety of holidays thorough books, videos, dancing, and learning about each holiday. — Laura, Dallas-Fort Worth ’12

By |December 13th, 2013|Take a Break|0 Comments|

Bring Veterans Day To Life In Your Classroom

Screen Shot 2013-10-30 at 10.23.05 PM

Veterans Day is right around the corner. Your students are probably super excited to have an extra day off (and, let’s be honest, so are you), but do they understand why Veterans Day is so important?

Over the next three to five years, more than one million military service members will exit the military and become veterans. Yet, because of a growing civilian-military divide in our country, these veterans will re-enter a population that largely misunderstands them. By educating children about what Veterans Day is and about who veterans are, we can inform the next generation and take vital steps to bridging the civilian-military divide in the future.

Veterans Day is the perfect time to incorporate lessons that foster understanding about the military and the veteran populations. Take a Veteran to School Day is a national program developed by HISTORY® to encourage teachers to invite veterans into their classrooms. Teachers can visit www.veterans.com to receive free Veterans Day resources and register for Take a Veteran to School Day. 

By |October 31st, 2013|Teaching Tips|0 Comments|

Star In Teach For America’s Halloween Video Celebration

Calling all boys and ghouls. We want YOU to star in the next Teach For America video.
It’s simple, just send us favorite pictures of you in your best childhood Halloween costume. Send as many as you like, all ages are appropriate.  We’ll compile these into a radical tribute to one of our very favorite holidays.
  • Email us photos
  • Include your name, region, corps year, age in costume and costume title.
  • Share this request with other alumni and corps members.  We want to include as many faces as possible!

The first five to e-mail their photos will win a FlipCam!

(Winners will be contacted for shipping address.)
By |October 18th, 2013|Take a Break|0 Comments|

“What is the one thing you want your students to know when they leave your classroom?”

Last weekend, 175 TFA teachers gathered in Atlanta for the first ever African American Corps Member Summit. We were there, and in between all of the amazing speakers and panels, we pulled a few corps members aside for a six-second interview: “What is the one thing you want your students to know when they leave your classroom?”

Here’s what we found out:

By |October 17th, 2013|Corps Stories|0 Comments|