Author and Education Entrepreneur Selected as PDK Distinguished Educator

ARLINGTON, Va., May 1, 2024.— Starr Sackstein, Chief Operating Officer and partner of Mastery Portfolio, LLC, has been named a 2024 PDK Distinguished Educator for her transformative work in developing alternative assessments and non-traditional grading practices. Her innovative approaches have created more authentic learning environments, directly benefiting students. PDK’s Distinguished Educators are leaders who have […]

Leading with Heart: Starr Sackstein of Mastery Portfolio On The Power of Authentic Women’s Leadership

An Interview With Pirie Jones Grossman This interview was originally published in Authority Magazine and can be found here: More authentic relationships — By getting to know my team well, I’m able to show my care and compassion in ways that help my team develop and grow. Additionally, these relationships have bloomed beyond the work […]

Tracking Progress and Metacognition

This week, we’re sharing one teacher’s journey to find tracking systems that work for her high school math class. When technology and the internet make raw information so readily accessible, we as teachers need to shift our focus from teaching content to teaching student how to learn. One of the important aspects in becoming an […]

Student Self Assessment Practices That Work

Understanding how we learn best is one of the keys to growth as human beings. This essential metacognitive skill is not innate and must be modeled and taught in school starting as early as possible. The way it looks for different age groups will be different, obviously as younger students are not always cognitively ready […]

Ambassador Post: Shifting the Grading Conversation

By Tyler Haglund, Science Teacher at Apple Valley High School The month is April, and a student walks up to me during independent work time and asks, “Mister, how much extra credit can I get to bump my grade?” This question, as well as many others, was the bane of my existence. How many times […]

Portfolios Tell a More Robust Story of Student Learning Than Tests Scores Alone

I work with a lot of brilliant students. I’m sure you do, too – students who are articulate, creative, curious, innovative changemakers who will create huge ripples in the world. Annie started the Gender and Sexuality Alliance, Richie volunteered to build a CNC machine for the engineering center, Dannie launched a website to raise awareness […]

Let Go of the Reins to Allow for Student Self-Advocacy

Let Go of the Reins to Allow for Student Self-Advocacy Written By Starr Sackstein Control, the false sense of knowing the outcome as the plan is put into action. Tightly holding the reins, manipulating the space to achieve a perceived understanding of success, all to maintain the illusion. Does this sound familiar? This is how […]

Deepen Reflection, Deepen Learning

Teachers can learn a lot from asking students to reflect and self-assess against the standards and we do the students and ourselves a disservice by not making it an expectation. Perhaps writing a reflection like this isn’t appropriate for every class, maybe a video or voice recording would be better.