Chopped (Teacher Edition)


In any event, I’m sure many of you are familiar with The TV show Chopped. If you are not, the show chopped is a show on the food network centered on meal preparation. More specifically, chopped puts a highlight on chefs ability to produce quality food in a short time frame, with specific ingredients.

I don’t watch much TV as programming is lackluster; however, I do occasionally enjoy an episode of Chopped.

Model Lessons:

Moreover, as a charter school administrator, I am very familiar with model lessons. Model lessons are apart of the teacher interview process in most charter schools. Teachers receive an objective, and the teacher puts together a lesson plan to guest teach in a class. After the lesson, the teacher then debriefs with the hiring committee to talk about the glows and grows of the lesson taught. I have seen instances in which a teacher has taught a subpar lesson, but was extremely reflective regarding his/her process, and was able to speak to ways to improve upon the lesson taught.

A New Way to Hire Teachers:

There are teaching shortages all across the nation. We have to think of innovative ideas to increase and encourage people to become teachers.
My idea is to create a TV show similar to the show Chopped.

Auditions will be held, creating this American Teacher Idol type buzz.

Potential teachers will receive materials for the different phases of a lesson.

For example, the TV show chopped takes you through a full course meal: appetizer, main course, and dessert.

Teachers chopped would consist of the do now; I do, Closing of the lesson.

Likewise, an urban school district will sponsor each season. A district identified as hard to staff is preferred. Each season would be 12-15 episodes, so a region would find 12-15 potential rock stars to teach in their school district. Not to mention, if the 2nd and 3rd place finishers are talented, they become part of the hiring pool as well.

Your Role:

The viewers at home will play a role in the show as well. You’d be able to dial in, or vote online, and your vote will count as part of the decision-making process.

The panel will consist of principals, and master teachers in the district.  The panel members will provide feedback to the teachers on how to be better for the next round, ultimately playing a part in selecting the winner.

I get it. I know it’s far fetched, but remember it’s going to take outside the box thinking like this to fix our k-12 education dilemma.

There is a Seven Bridges in Your School, Protect Him!

Seven Bridges Remembered:

There are many things we take for granted. Sometimes that includes life itself. My life has become centered on being selfless, bringing light to issues that affect our community, and helping to develop strategies to prevent future trauma.


With great sadness, I write to you about Seven Bridges. The name itself screams of originality.  I’ll never get to meet Seven Bridges in person because Seven killed himself.  Classmates bullied him at school.  His parents alerted school staff, and his parents even made a move to change his school.  Alas, not even the change in schools would prevent Seven from taking his own life.

Bullying in Schools:

These types of events happen way more often than we are comfortable speaking. I understand why, but not talking about the problems won’t make them go away.

The problem, in this case, is bullying. How can we address bullying in our schools?

Whether through social media, mental or physical, bullying is on the rise.

Here are ways to address bullying in schools:

1. Awareness. Take a learning inventory of your students and your parents. Many don’t understand what bullying is nowadays. Many parents think about what they went through as students in school. We have to bring them full circle so they can understand the type of trauma students go through currently.
2. Have social workers and educators that are culturally competent. Cultural competence ensures students have space and opportunity to talk things through in what they feel is a safe space. Having trusted members on staff is helpful to the vulnerable population.
3. Have workshops with parents about how to identify the signs. If a student is out of sorts, or they aren’t acting like they usually act, parents and educators need to have a heightened sense of what support the child needs.

Bully Prevention:

Incidents like this can are preventable. Educators have to be vigilant. I for one would not want an incident like this to occur on my watch. To prevent an act like this from occurring, I’ll do whatever it takes. Will you? Join me in ensuring bullying ends with Seven.

If this story resonated with you, please share. We have to protect these kids!