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Everything But Teaching

Everything But Teaching
Planning, Paperwork, and Processing

Edited by:

Foreword by Pearl Rock Kane

May 2009 | 128 pages | Corwin

"I wish I'd had this book forty years ago when I first started teaching. Everything But Teaching, with its moving anecdotes, pragmatic examples, and incisive observations, is the teacher's version of the Boy Scout Handbook—the ideal guide for teaching purposely without getting lost or sidetracked. It is perfect for new teacher orientation and veteran teachers."
—Patrick F. Bassett, President
National Association of Independent Schools

"Stephen Valentine knows teaching through and through. Here he packs a huge message into a short space. I urge anyone who cares about schools, students, learning, or teaching to read this gem of a book."
—Edward Hallowell, Consultant
The Hallowell Center

Learn the 7 Imperatives for managing the "other" work of a teacher!!

Every teacher knows that what happens before and after class is as important as what happens during class. This accessible resource gives all teachers indispensable tips for managing professional priorities outside the classroom and saving energy for the most essential part of their work: teaching students.

Real-life vignettes, planning sheets, and other templates, illustrate how to master the multitasking demands of the teaching life, including:

  • Planning time wisely
  • Tailoring grading practices to provide clear feedback
  • Holding productive meetings with students, parents, or colleagues
  • Keeping and using records effectively
  • Corresponding with grace, tact, and detail
  • Processing information and refining procedures
  • Embracing new professional learning opportunities

Foreword by Pearl Rock Kane
About the Author
Introduction: School Time Versus Classroom Time
1. Imperative 1: Plan Your Time Wisely
Your Calendar

Your Dynamic Calendar

Your Goals and How to Accomplish Them

Now You Can Relax

2. Imperative 2: Tailor Your Grading to Suit the Needs of Your Students
Three Cautionary Tales

A Few Final Words

3. Imperative 3: Hold Great Meetings Founded on Authentic Commitment
Why Meet?

Student Meetings (Part 1)

The Systematic Approach

Student Meetings (Part 2)

Parent Meetings

Meetings Led by Others

Distractions During Meetings

4. Imperative 4: Use Records to Generate Learning Opportunities
The Evergreen System

How to Store and Use Records

When to Purge Records

Record Keeping and Deliberate Choice

5. Imperative 5: Correspond With Grace, Tact, and Detail
The First Principle of Teacher Correspondence: Be Supportive and Graceful

The Second Principle of Teacher Correspondence: Get Specific

Correspond With Colleagues

When to Stop Writing

6. Imperative 6: Process or Perish
What Is Processing?

When and How to Process?

7. Imperative 7: Become a Radical Learner
Learning From Mentors and Collaboration

Learning at Retreats

Learning From Meetings Outside of the School

Learning From New School Responsibilities

Learning by Leading Groups and School Activities

Learning From New Experiences

8. Conclusion: Enjoy Your Balanced Professional Life

"The most compelling line in the book is 'I teach kids,' not books or concepts. Regardless of the subject, we all teach kids, and sometimes we can lose sight of that. The book focuses on how to not let extrinsic factors get in the way of our goal."

Loukea N. Kovanis-Wilson, Chemistry Instructor
Clarkston High School, MI

"This topic is of vital interest to beginning teachers. The use of time, the demands of time, the changing nature of teaching, the explosion of knowledge, technology: all will be growing in the coming years."

Ronald W. Poplau, Author of The Doer of Good Becomes Good

“Teachers who know how valuable their time is will love this book. Managing these duties will lead to a more successful classroom not only for the teacher, but also for the students.”

Jude A. Huntz, Middle School English Teacher
The Barstow School, Kansas City, MO

“This book makes an incredible contribution to the field. It helps readers not only gain insights and resources into how to be better teachers, but also encourages us because we wear so many hats.”

Kate Kinnan, Sixth-Grade History Teacher
Junction City Middle School, KS

"Once in a while, you read a book that absolutely nails it. Stephen Valentine knows teaching through and through. He is filled with a passion for his field. Here he packs into a short space a huge message. I urge anyone who cares about schools, students, learning, or teaching to read this gem of a book."

Edward Hallowell, Consultant
The Hallowell Center

"I wish I had had Stephen Valentine’s wisdom, or at least his book, forty years ago when I first started teaching. With moving anecdotes, pragmatic examples, and incisive observations, this is the teacher’s version of the Boy Scout Handbook, the guide you need to march through the forest of teaching purposefully, without getting lost or sidetracked. Valentine demonstrates that routine but necessary tasks outside of the classroom (meetings, conferences, planning, professional development, record-keeping, grading, etc.) can not only be well-managed but actually contribute to a teacher's effectiveness."

Patrick F. Bassett, President
National Association of Independent Schools

"A practical, plain-spoken primer full of concrete advice for harried, hurried teachers. Stephen Valentine offers down-to-earth prescriptions to help teachers focus their energies, refresh their skills, and renew their commitment."

Robert Evans, Director
The Human Relations Service

"A refreshing insight into modern day and future education that provides a practical outlook for the teachers who hope to keep pace with education's ever-changing scenario. Valentine suggests practices that save time and promote organization so that we may indeed teach!"

Christina Gordon, Educator
Durban Avenue School, Hopatcong, NJ
Key features
  • Invaluable tips on how to efficiently manage recurring tasks like lesson planning, grading, running meetings, keeping records, corresponding with parents, etc.
  • Real-life vignettes illustrating the pitfalls and successes involved in navigating school outside of the classroom
  • Multiple resources including templates, planning sheets, and reproducibles
  • Wisdom imparted with the good humor of a mentor and friend

Sample Materials & Chapters


Chapter 1

For instructors

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