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My EduParent Perspective: Balancing the Two A’s, Advocacy and Accountability

In parenting, personal by rafranzdavis1 Comment

If you have children in school, logging in to the online grading system is a necessity. Many of them even have alert settings and getting those alerts is critical to you supporting your child. This is especially important for high school students. In a perfect world, my son would tell me every little detail of his life and for the most part, he does. However, when it comes to grades…my son often holds back and understandably so. I am his mother but I am also a teacher and it is sometimes difficult to turn the “super critical edu” part of …

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The Geometry Project, aka When Your Mom is A Tech Specialist

In Ipad, Math, parenting, Teaching Strategies by rafranzdavis6 Comments

About a week ago, my son was assigned a geometry vocabulary project that required him to choose 30 words from a list and visually represent them. The instructions were as follows… “You are to find these images in the real world. You can personally take pictures, find them on the internet, or find the items in a magazine. You must manually or electronically mark the picture so that I can identify the geometric term in the picture. You will organize these items to present to me in some manner such as gluing the pictures to posterboard, create a “book” of …

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Notes from Khalil: The First Weeks of School

In parenting, personal by rafranzdavis5 Comments

I love spending time talking to my son about his day. I will also say that my life as a technologist is fueled by his opinions on how kids should use technology for learning as well as when they should not. While talking, I handed him my laptop to write his thoughts. Below is his reflection I don’t like the first weeks of school because all the work is too easy. You’re always learning stuff that you already learned from sixth grade and up like lab safety. It doesn’t change but teachers act like it does. It’s terrible to be …

Conversations With My Son: Your Mom is “THE Rafranz Davis”

In parenting, Professional Growth by rafranzdavis2 Comments

The first thing that my son said to me yesterday was… “Hey mom, you got called, “THE Rafranz Davis” by one of my teachers.” Oh great! The context of this statement came about because my son wasn’t paying attention in his computer class which meant that he missed the directions. So, of course…the natural response from his teacher was… “Your mom is THE Rafranz Davis, you can do this in your sleep.” Or something along those lines… Although I am so against comparing parent to child, I know this teacher and I get the humor in the message that she was trying …

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My Edu-Parent Perspective: Getting Through the First Week of School

In parenting by rafranzdavis3 Comments

As a connected parent educator, it is tough to remain edu-neutral when it comes to who teaches my kids especially when they are in schools where 0% of the teachers are connected. I have to make this distinction between “connected” and “not” because of the difference gained through deep conversations and access to ideas from a broader perspective. Face it, we are different…we just are. I made the choice two years ago to leave my home town where I started my career but I also made the tough choice to leave my son in this school. Actually, with my insane …

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My Edu-Parent Perspective: My Son, My Fears, His Choices

In parenting by rafranzdavis0 Comments

As a mother, I have many fears when it comes to my son. I wonder how he’s coping with the absence of his father and I wonder how he is dealing with some of the other struggles of our family. I wonder how he is figuring out his place in the world. We talk but I’m not naive enough to think that he tells me everything. I know that he doesn’t. As someone who has spent a great deal of time working with other people’s kids, I know how certain emotions are often undetectable. Boys, especially boys of color, often carry scars …

The Dehumanizing of Black Boys at School

In parenting, Professional Growth by rafranzdavis4 Comments

Last night, while watching the situation in Ferguson unfold, I thought of my son, my nephews, my students…my Michael Browns…my young black boys. Today, I challenge you to think of your schools and the brow beating racism that often exist in our hallways. What kinds of opportunities are you providing the black boys in your school so that they feel valued, validated and not just accepted…but accelerated? What will be your discussion on campus in the aftermath of Ferguson? Believe me…Even when you think that you don’t need to have one…YOU DO.     Below is a snippet from my journal…an 8 month …

Conversations with My Son Regarding the Mike Brown Murder

In parenting by rafranzdavis7 Comments

Today, I sat down to have a conversation with my 15-year-old son about Mike Brown, the 18 year old that died at the hands of a police officer in St. Louis, Mo. I’ve learned to prepare myself for what my son has to say as I am often left reflecting on my own thoughts. Today was no different. He said… “All the stuff that we talked about when Trayvon Martin died and then again when Jordan Davis died didn’t really matter here. Of course the police are saying one story. Even if Mike had an “altercation” with the policeman, he still …

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My EduParent Perspective: On Being a Parent of Color and the Vilson Piece

In parenting, Professional Growth by rafranzdavis0 Comments

If you haven’t read José Vilson’s piece, Michelle Obama and Why Teachers Need to Embrace Critique, you should. Many have criticized both Michelle Obama for her statements and José for his writing and in a perfect world, all teachers see kids as kids and not kids as something else. In a lot of places and schools, this is not the case. I learned from my own mother that visibility was important. As a parent, I’ve learned that if I wasn’t visible at school…my children were invisible. We’ve seen our share of jacked up situations in the case of our children …

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Parenting a Teen: Handcuffs, Alcohol and Lessons in My Son’s Mistake

In parenting by rafranzdavis4 Comments

I struggled with sharing this story but I felt that it was one that needed to be shared. I’m an educator but I’m a parent first and sometimes I make mistakes. My children make mistakes and writing this was really therapy for me in dealing with it. I haven’t slept. I needed to write and this is it.  Yesterday, I ignored my gut instinct, intuition and experience telling me not to allow my son to go to a friend’s quinceañera. It was odd that without thinking, the only word that came to mind was NO. I’ve rarely said no and my finite answer caught us both …