When I transitioned from classroom teacher to a more administrative role, I made a lot of assumptions about how to teach my peers. Obviously, after more than 10 years in the classroom, I understand classroom management, I know how to plan a lesson, and I’ve attended a workshop before. What’s more: I am an adult myself, so I am somewhat of an expert on the “adult learning experience.” Therefore, teaching adults should be a breeze.

While my experience as a classroom teacher definitely helps inform any setting in which teaching and learning take place, I can safely say that my…

I have always been fascinated by the nuances of interaction. The deeper I get into leadership, the more I am delighted to see that self-awareness and self-reflection are key practices to becoming a transformative coach, educator, and leader. I identify as an empath, which means I’m highly attuned to other’s feelings and energy, and often times I pick up on things without fully understanding where it comes from. As one of three children in a house characterized by fairly chaotic energy, being able to read between the lines and listen for feeling in addition to content served me well.


This is not a ground-breaking discovery, nor is it some new maverick idea that will disrupt the status quo. However, it is a simple hack that has made the way I take notes much easier, organized, and coherent, and the way I present information more logical and visually appealing. I humbly share my secret with you: SmartArt graphics from Microsoft’s PowerPoint tools.

Let me backtrack: reading and retaining nonfiction is a labor intensive process for me. As a reformed perfectionist, something about nonfiction primes my brain for active reading so that I can retain everything as accurately as possible. My…

Chapter 2

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This is a part of a project for my summer reading book for work and my personal goals of sketching every week. The notes are taken from Zaretta Hammond’s book, which I highly recommend purchasing from your local book store.

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Photo by Nikolay Tarashchenko on Unsplash

As we settle into week 5 of our remote learning module, a new divide is becoming clear in my work environment: adults who have been able to adapt to technology and adults who are struggling to adapt. Who can host Zoom classes and control their students while also sharing a screen? Who is feeling energized by new opportunities and exploring new apps and ways to engage their students? Who is falling behind, relying solely on emails? Who is overwhelmed with the breadth of what must be learned in such little time without a mentor in the room? …

As of today, Governor Jay Inslee has mandated that all schools close until April 24 in light of the threat of COVID-19. As ground zero for the outbreak in the United States, Seattle has quickly become a ghost town. Even on a beautiful clear day in the middle of March, there are few people out. Restaurants are closed, bars are closed, libraries are closed: all those years perfecting the Seattle Freeze have prepared us for this moment.

Today also marks my school’s first foray into remote learning, and it has been a whirlwind of troubleshooting, problem-solving, and cohabiting the same…

When I think back on my most successful groups and projects we created, I see a dynamic group of individuals, equipped with the necessary tools, and bolstered by a supportive administration. From 2013–2017, I worked as a fourth-grade teacher in the Bay Area, on a teaching team of 4, with two co-teachers in each classroom. Collaboration was embedded in almost every part of our teaching practice: there was consistent communication about curriculum and lesson plans on at least a weekly basis. We met before, during, and after each unit, and we divided curriculum content equally between one another. …

Charlotte Gjedsted

Educator, long-distance runner, and lifelong learner

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