The Chalk Blog

Dawn Butler

Dawn Butler is the Lead Course Specialist with Learners Edge. Prior to joining the Edge, Dawn was a high school English teacher for 11 years. In her free time, she can be found wrangling her 6 year old son, 3 year old daughter, 2 cats, and a dog. Her parents were teachers, her husband is a SPED teacher, and her parents-in-law are teachers, which really helps Dawn to continue to foster her passion for education as she works to offer the best possible courses at the Edge!
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Recent Posts

How to be "Folks"

Everybody Needs Somebody.

“Jolly came home bleeding and she doesn’t have folks.
‘Nobody doesn’t have folks,’ I said.
‘I’m Nobody, then,’ she said, ’‘Cause I don’t.’ Her whole face was scraped like it had a grater taken to it, like it was cheese.”

-Make Lemonade by Virginia Euwer Wolff

In Make Lemonade, 14-year-old LaVaughn takes a job as a babysitter for 17-year-old Jolly, who has lived in foster care her whole life, and has two children from fathers who are not in the picture. As the story goes on, it’s clear that Jolly doesn’t really know how to do life – manage money, raise healthy children, even hold a job – because she has never really had what she calls “folks”: people who took a vested interest in showing her how to do things. LaVaughn helps Jolly to navigate through some of her issues and shows her resources to help her get on her feet, and to find resources for her to learn more about how to access a good life for her children and herself.

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Topics: Teaching Wellness & Inspiration, Social Emotional Learning

Getting Students to Write [VIDEO]

Fun prompts to get your class engaged!

Creating writing prompts is easy. Creating FUN writing prompts to boost student engagement... now that's a tricky one! Dawn from our Learners Edge Curriculum and Instruction team is here to give you some fresh ideas on how to get your students to write. 

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Topics: Video, Teaching Excellence, Instructional Strategies

Late Homework [VIDEO]

Are you experiencing difficulties with students turning assignments in late? Do you want to help them succeed by allowing late assignments, but feel overwhelmed when they all submit them at the end of a grading period? Well then we have the perfect video blog for you! Check out Dawn's helpful tips on keeping you AND your students on track with late homework.

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Topics: Teaching Wellness & Inspiration, Video, Teaching Advice

Motivation & Engagement [VIDEO]

Do you feel as though your students' minds are all over the place sometimes? Or that your teacher-mind is scattered? Like you all, collectively, just need a little break to get back on track? If you said yes to any of these questions, check out our video blog for some ideas on how to keep your students, and yourself, motivated and engaged throughout the day!

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Topics: Teaching Wellness & Inspiration, Video, Instructional Strategies, Teaching Advice

How to Stay Focused: Knit Wit

I started thinking more in depth about how different people learn when I was caught screwing around at a faculty meeting. I was sitting with a few of my friends, and we were writing notes back and forth, and trying to make each other laugh (apparently, the topic du jour wasn’t that engaging).  It was that “church laugh,” you know the one, where you cannot make a noise, and it’s hopeless.  My friend Sheila wrote something particularly and extremely hilarious.  I couldn’t contain my laughter and made a sort of spitting noise.   

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Topics: Teaching Advice, Instructional Strategies

Project Based Learning - Getting Started! [VIDEO]

How might your classroom look different next school year? If you're ready to embrace Project-Based Learning, we'd love to share some strategies!



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Topics: Instructional Strategies

Limping to the Finish Line

Not so long ago, I was in your shoes, excepting that this job at Learners Edge was waiting for me in mid-June.

I was teaching high school English to sophomores and juniors. I was 5 months pregnant. My classroom got AMPLE afternoon sun from the south. No air conditioning. Stuffy, even with the 3 oscillating fans I had positioned around the room to blow the hot air around. (Lovely for the “blooming” pregnant woman, by the way.)  

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Topics: Teaching Advice

Personalized Learning Network [VIDEO]

A Personalized Learning Network (PLN) is about making connections and building personal relationships with teachers, school administrators, university professors, and experts around the world. Learn some simple tips to help you get started in establishing your own PLN and access new ways to communicate, collaborate, and build community.

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Topics: Technology, Video

When Students Become Our Teachers

I’ve been thinking a lot about what it means for students to “get an education.”

Teachers go into education as a field, and we do so because we believe in education. We know that it’s important for students to get an education to give them an advantage, a pathway to something that will advance their future in some way. The whole purpose of an education is to open minds, expand knowledge, and prepare students for living in a world that is full of opportunities.

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Topics: Teaching Advice

Vulnerability and the Art of What Makes a Great Teacher 

 Vulnerability is the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, courage, empathy, and creativity. It is the source of hope, empathy, accountability, and authenticity. If we want greater clarity in our purpose or deeper and more meaningful spiritual lives, vulnerability is the path.”  

 Brené Brown, Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead 

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Topics: Teaching Excellence

Learners Edge is passionately committed to providing you with continuing education coursework, materials, and tools that will help you succeed in your classroom and in your career.

Offering more than 100 print-based or online courses for teachers, you can earn the graduate credit you need for salary advancement and meet your professional development needs. Contact us today to get started!

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