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My Teachers LoungeWe’ve all heard the warnings to stay out of the teachers’ lounge. The lounge has a reputation of being a negative place filled with teachers complaining, a space that makes you feel more discouraged when you leave than when you came in.

The new collaborative blog The Teachers Lounge is looking to change that. Formerly called Inspired Teacher, the site was founded by Laura Parker, a former teacher, parent to three, and homeschooling mom. She’s currently living in Thailand, where her husband is directing a Christian humanitarian foundation.

Here are the three goals of the site outlined by Laura:

1.  Inspiration for the Teacher.  Whether you are teaching in the classroom or at home, we will be writing encouraging stories and ideas to develop  your own passion in educating. Think of us as your personal cheerleaders, your thematic background music, that extra cup of coffee when you’re feeling weary.  You can expect quotes, questions, videos, stories, real-life examples– all aimed solely at the encouragement of you.

2.  Character Education Ideas.  We will be posting simple lesson plans which you can implement in your own classrooms to promote quality character in your students.  Most lessons will require little or no planning {Hey, you’re teachers, you’re busy, we get it}.  Stop in to My Teachers Lounge and let the community here know how the lessons went.

3. Encouraging Community.  Our hope is that this site will foster positive community among educators.  This will be a place not to debate over laws or methods, but a place to cheer one another on.  Teaching is hard work, but, somehow, it’s not quite as hard when we know that we’re not the only ones doing it.  Collaboration is key, always, and we want our online space to be a bit of a virtual teachers lounge where your voice can be heard.

I can’t think of a more important mission or focus, and am thrilled that Laura recently invited me to become a Teacher’s Lounge writer. There are currently 9 of us writing for the blog, and I am so honored to be part of such an amazing team of educators!

My very first post on the site was an eight question get-to-know-you  interview that each contributor answers when joining the team. Today I shared a post called The Problem of “Supposed To” which is about examining our expectations for ourselves and others in our work as teachers.

Some of my favorite recent posts by other contributors include:

You can subscribe to the blog via email or RSS feed, connect with us on Facebook and Twitter, or share your ideas in a guest blog post.

Hope to see you in the teachers’ lounge!

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First day of school stories

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I’ve had really intense dreams about school the last three nights: Sunday’s was about solving a ridiculous scheduling dilemma for a math block (success!) and Monday’s was about finally convincing an early childhood teacher to teach procedures to her kids instead of just yelling all day when the kids ran wild.  In both dreams, I […]

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Nomination time!

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It’s time for the sixth annual Edublog Awards to honor the best education blogs on the web. With over 100 edublogs in my Google Reader, choosing just one for each category was a daunting task (especially for Best Teacher Blog, since there are so many excellent ones). It’s also challenging to determine which site falls […]

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Amusement, irony, and sarcasm in classrooms across the blogosphere…

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Teaching kindergarten is planning for Halloween ‘academic games’ and changing 29 children into costumes for a 20 minute party, solely for the amusement of her principal. Hobo Teacher laments a colleague’s use of “The Math Pimp” persona. I suggest announcing it over the P.A. system. Mrs. Bluebird uncovers yet another reason to preview materials before […]

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The Cornerstone Accolades: May 2009

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Every month, the Accolades take on a slightly different format. This month, I’d like to acknowledge three outstanding post series: Total Teacher Transformation: Hope for All Teachers from Joel at So You Want to Teach?Joel is known for having great series on his blog, but I really like this one because it speaks to the […]

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The Cornerstone Accolades: April 2009

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How is it time for another monthly round-up already? It feels like I just finished the last one… but maybe the time slipped by because I’m frequently recommending blog posts on Twitter. You can check out the posts I don’t include here with the Accolades by visiting my Twitter page. Now, without further ado, an […]

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The Cornerstone Accolades: March 2009

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This is a special “Voices from the Classroom” edition of The Accolades. (View the original post here for an explanation of how the accolades work.) In past months, I’ve noticed a big disconnect between the blog topics of out-of-classroom bloggers and those in the trenches. There is value in both, and a rightful place for […]

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The Cornerstone Accolades: February 2009

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We’re back with the second edition of The Cornerstone Accolades, in which I recognize some of the most outstanding recent posts in the edublogosphere. There is no tagging involved: it’s simply a celebration and commendation of the reading that’s challenged me over the past month. (You can read the first edition of The Cornerstone Accolades […]

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The Cornerstone Accolades: January 2009

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Welcome to a new monthly feature at The Cornerstone Blog! As regular readers know, I’m a big fan of Google Reader and highly recommend it as the most efficient way to keep up with blogs. One of the best features is that you can ensure you’re viewing only new content by having gReader mark each […]

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