Cover art for podcast We Teach So Hard!

We Teach So Hard!

79 EpisodesProduced by Tracy, Kathie, Deann & RettaWebsite

Four teaching friends from across the country who've discovered that if you don't laugh you cry, and lose sight of your "why." Pour yourself a cup of coffee...or a glass of wine and join us as we talk shop, trash, and mull over our teaching lives. We promise, you'll laugh!

79 Episodes | 2018 - 2020

Episode 80 Teacher Summer Read Series: Becoming by Michelle Obama

July 14th, 2020


All of us at We Teach So Hard felt like we needed an uplifting read, and listeners...THIS book inspired us! By the end of  Michelle Obama´s memoir,

Episode 79 Tech Apps, Websites and Resources for Your Virtual Classroom

July 1st, 2020


When you have to learn a lot in a short amount of time, it´s not unusual to feel overwhelmed. In fact, we´ve grown to expect those emotions! In this episode, we discuss apps, websites and online resources that we found …

Episode 78 Teacher Summer Read Series: UNTAMED by Glennon Doyle

June 23rd, 2020


Our first book in our summer read series, Untamed is the perfect avenue for self-reflection. Most have us have been in our own little physical cages over the last 3 months of shelter-in-place, but what about those …

Episode 76 Looking Ahead to the Unknown: Making Connections in the New Digital School Year

June 16th, 2020


We know, we know. It feels like you just ended your school year...or maybe you have! But with all the uncertainty, we are already thinking ahead to …

Episode 75 Organizing Your Virtual Classroom for the EOY

June 10th, 2020


Normally, you'd be breaking down your classroom, cleaning off shelves, recycling your piles of paper, and taking bulletin boards down. But in our …

Episode 74 Saying Goodbye In Your Virtual Classroom

June 3rd, 2020


You don't teach sooooo've been teaching TOOOOO hard! We Teach So Hard is back with a new podcast episode about saying goodbye to your …

Episode 73 Book Talk Theme Talk: Poetry Books

March 18th, 2020


Roses are red...violets are blue...we're feeling a little bit anxious, how about you? This past week has been mind-blowing, emotional, and …

Episode 72 Trying Classroom Service Projects With Your Students

March 11th, 2020


It seems like everywhere we look on social media, we're seeing article after article about teaching empathy in the classroom. One of our favorite ways to teach empathy is to do service projects with our kiddos. Nothing …

Episode 71 Tackling Project-Based Learning...Like a Linebacker!

February 25th, 2020


Project-based learning is sooooo much fun! Right? But it can be daunting, too. The preparation, the organization, the performance-based assessments- Ugh! Sometimes it feels like we're suiting up for a football game, …

Episode 70 Fostering a Culturally Responsive Classroom, Part 4: Choice & Differentiated Assessment

February 18th, 2020


Welcome to our last episode in our Fostering a Culturally Responsive Classroom. In this episode, we relive our tragic elementary school cooperative …

Episode 69 Book Talk Theme Talk: Books About Hope

February 11th, 2020


Welcome to our sixth episode of Book Talk Theme Talk. This month, We Teach So Hard is discussing hope-themed books to enrich your reader's workshop. In this episode, we offer a wealth of kidlit recommendations and …

Episode 68 Fostering a Culturally Responsive Classroom, Part 3: Changing Attitudes

February 5th, 2020


This episode has got us singing our Patti LaBelle! Some sequins, a few feathers, and a blinged-out mic... "I got a new attitude!"  In this 3rd …

Episode 67 Fostering a Culturally Responsive Classroom, Part 2: Motivation & Engagement

January 29th, 2020


In this second episode of a 4-part series on the culturally responsive classroom, we explore how we foster student motivation and engagement. We muck …

Episode 66 Fostering a Culturally Responsive Classroom: A Safe & Respectful Environment

January 21st, 2020


In this first episode of a 4-part series on the culturally responsive classroom we explore how we build a respectful environment where our students …

Episode 65 Book Talk Theme Talk: We're in the Mood for LOVE!

January 12th, 2020


"Love is a Many Splendored Thing..."

"All You Need is Love..."

"Love Me Tender..."

Love IS in the air at We Teach So Hard! February is just around the corner and there's no time like the present to start gathering books …

Episode 64 Looking for Some Action? Try a Classroom Action Research!

January 8th, 2020


You're over the hump of the school year. January is here, and it's a new month, new year. If you're anything like us, January is for tweaking ... …

Episode 63 Teaching Your Students to Self-Assess

December 4th, 2019


We've all had those students. When you ask them how they think they did, they always say, "I did awesome!" Sometimes, they ask questions like, "What if we don't really think we need improvement? Then what do we do?" …

Episode 62 Book Talk Theme Talk: Using Books to Teach About Honesty

November 27th, 2019


Another book list for you because no one has time to hunt for books when you're teaching themes. November's theme is HONESTY.  This is We Teach So Hard's fourth Book Talk-Theme Talk post. In this episode, we share …

Episode 61 4th in The Technology Series: Using Technology to Differentiate

November 19th, 2019


Raise your hand if you have umpteen million learner needs in your one little ole' classroom. Differentiation is the name of the game, and yet it can …

Episode 60 3rd in the Technology Series: Using Technology to Engage Students

November 13th, 2019


What's a teacher to do with her reluctant learners? You plan, you agonize, you teach small group lessons... sometimes the urge to throw up your hands …

Episode 59 2nd in the Technology Series: Using Technology for Collaboration

November 6th, 2019


Want an engaging approach to collaboration? Try adding technology. Whether you're teaching kids how to podcast or setting up book discussion skyping …

Episode 58 1st in the Technology Series: Using Technology That Teaches

October 29th, 2019


What's that we hear? Is that wailing and the gnashing of teeth? Did someone say, "Technology?" All kidding aside, technology is a powerful teaching …

Episode 57 Book Talk Theme Talk: Books About Bullying

October 20th, 2019


We love book lists. In fact, we suspect that most teachers do because we have so much on our plates. Looking for books with similar themes so we can work our literary magic with cross-text connections is so time …

Episode 56 Behavior Modification 101: No Bells Needed!

October 15th, 2019


We think behavior modification is like going to Weight Watchers. We plan ahead, set things up for success, buy a new scale, and then fall apart on the third day of the first week. In our classrooms, we plan ahead, put …

Episode 55 Getting Your Students to Self-Reflect

October 8th, 2019


Sometimes, goal-setting with students can feel like a root canal. You know it's needed, but the time expense, effort, and white-knuckled anticipation can be daunting. We want our students to think about their learning …

Episode 54 Why Did The Chicken Cross The Road? Exploring Humor in The Classroom

September 25th, 2019


The classroom that laughs together, learns together. That's our mantra at We Teach So Hard. Humor is such a powerful teaching tool. Whether we're …

Episode 53 Book Talk-Theme Talk: Books For Teaching About Perseverance

September 15th, 2019


We love book lists. In fact, we suspect that most teachers do because we have so much on our plates. Looking for books with similar themes so we can work our literary magic with cross-textual connections (sounds kind of …

Episode 52 Just a Bunch of Manic Mornings? Add a Little Zen to Your A.M.

September 3rd, 2019


Remember that old Bangles song? "Just another manic Monday...wish it was Sunday..." Sometimes every one of our mornings feels like a manic Monday. If …

Episode 51 Whattaya Mean We Have To Work Together? Cooperative Learning 101

August 28th, 2019


We've all struggled with cooperative learning, either as teachers of students. In this episode we explore ways to get your kids collaborating without …

Episode 50: Fifty Reason We Love Teaching! Come Celebrate With Us!

August 19th, 2019


There MUST be 50 reasons to love teaching! We are celebrating our 50th podcast episode! Help us celebrate and enter to win the We Teach So Hard …

Got Theme? August's Book Talk on Belonging

August 11th, 2019


Welcome to We Teach So Hard's inaugural themed book talk episode! Every 2nd week of the month, we'll be exploring books around a central theme. This …

Episode 48 Student Discourse 101: Teaching Kids How to Talk

August 7th, 2019


Accountable talk. On-task talk. Turn and talk. No matter what you call it, we can all agree that it's really important that our students learn how to engage in discourse. They need to be able to share their thinking, …

Episode 47 When Professional Development Disappoints: It's Time For An Unconference

July 28th, 2019


We've all been there, and it's usually on the day before school.  We're trapped in a PD when we have 1,001 other more pressing things to do. Research …

Episode 46 Summer Reads Series: Goodbye For Now

July 14th, 2019


It's our last summer read and we're crying in our cocktails, but this one is thought-provoking, we promise! Goodbye For Now by Laurie Frankel is a modern science fiction novel that left us thinking about many …

Episode 45 Summer Reads Series: Autism in Heels

July 9th, 2019


Join us for our 3rd episode in our Summer Reads Series. In this episode, we discuss a memoir, Autism in Heels by Jennifer Cook O'Toole.  As teachers, …

Episode 44 Summer Reads Series: Where The Crawdads Sing

July 1st, 2019


Hey lovely listeners! We hope you're enjoying your summer as much as we are. Welcome to the second installment of We Teach So Hard's Summer Reads …

Episode 43 Summer Reads Series: The Samurai's Garden

June 23rd, 2019


Ahhhhhhhh... It's summer, finally. Welcome to the first installment of We Teach So Hard's Summer Reads Series where we suggest pleasure-read books …

Episode 42 Can a Teacher Get a Little Encouragement? Surviving the End of the Year Madness

June 11th, 2019


The end is in sight! Nothing can bring relief and yet instill panic like that statement.  We're bedraggled, exhausted, and wishing we had a margarita instead of that third cup of coffee. And, we have miles to go before …

Episode 41 A Teacher's Most Embarrassing Moments: How to Grin and Bear Them

June 4th, 2019


Toilet paper on your shoe? Skirt tucked into your tights? Or maybe,  hygiene mishaps? We've all been there. We've all had those moments when we wish …

Episode 40 How to Keep Your Kiddos Learning Over the Sunmer

May 28th, 2019


Watermelon. Swimming. Barbecue. These are words that come to mind when we think of summer.  We don't think "math worksheets" when we think of summer. In this episode, we discuss ways to help your students avoid the …

Episode 39 The End Is Near: Planning For Your EOY Celebrations

May 22nd, 2019


Planning for your end-of-year classroom celebrations doesn't have to feel apocalyptic! We offer tips and suggestions for some great ways to celebrate your kiddos.  You won't have to smash your piggy bank, either, we …

Episode 38 Excedrin-Free End-of-the-Year Organization: Get Out Your Packing Tape!

May 7th, 2019


The end is in sight, and you have to think about packing up your classroom for the summer. Whether you're required to pack up your entire room for the summer, or tuck your teaching goodies away in cabinets and closets, …

SPECIAL Announcement from WE TEACH SO HARD! It's a Giveaway! Happy Teacher Appreciation Week to YOU!

May 7th, 2019


Calling all listeners! This announcement is JUST for you, because YOU TEACH SO HARD! Listen, and click the link below to enter!

Episdoe 37 Glue Gun At The Ready? It's Almost Mother's Day!

May 1st, 2019


Looking for the perfect Mother's Day craft for your kiddos to do this week? SO ARE WE! Seriously though, sometimes Mother's Day can be difficult to …

Episode 36 So You're Teaching Summer School?

April 23rd, 2019


You're tired...bone tired, but someone has got to pay the bills, so you're teaching summer school this year! It doesn't have to be doom, gloom and …

Episode 35 Outdoor Education: The Antidote for Waning Attention

April 16th, 2019


Do we hear wailing and the gnashing of teeth? The end is near, and your students are squirrely and CHECKED OUT. Don't freak out! Take them outside! In this episode of WE TEACH SO HARD, we share fun end-of-year ideas for …

Episode 34 Granola and Peace Signs...Lesson Ideas for Earth Day

April 9th, 2019


We've got the future of the planet in our classrooms. Earth Day is a fantastic opportunity to begin conservation conversations and education with your students with the intent that Earth Day might be celebrated EVERY …

Episode 33 Interdisciplinary Projects Can Save Your Sanity

April 3rd, 2019


We're galloping toward the year's end. There's standardized testing to get through...HOURS of it, in fact. Field trips, assemblies, learning celebrations, and don't forget about your evaluation, report cards, common …

Episode 32 Roses Are Red, Violets Are Blue, Sunshine is Yellow & National Poetry Month is COOL!

March 24th, 2019


April is National Poetry Month and we at We Teach So Hard have collectively decided that it is one of our favorite months! Poetry can rock your …

Episode 31 Maybe It's the Luck of the Irish!

March 21st, 2019


Maybe we'll never find the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, but we feel dang lucky to be teachers. There's nothing easy about our jobs, but the …

Episode 30 Standardized Testing and Your Sanity

March 12th, 2019


It's getting to be that time of year. Test prep... test prep... TEST PREP! You know what we're talking about, don't you? The testing manual says it …

Episode 29 What Teachers Wished the Public Understood About Teaching

March 5th, 2019


Calling all #LOSER teachers! This episode is just for you. Join us as we laugh, cry (and maybe rage, a little) about what we wish people understood …

Episode 28 March is Reading Month Merriment & Madness

February 26th, 2019


March is Reading Month and Read Across America week are just around the corner? Are you ready? We love the intention of these celebrations...the cool …

Episode 27 Teacher Fashion Throughout the Years

February 17th, 2019


Do you remember floaty long dresses, appliqued with apple patches? Did you own teacher necklaces made from wooden blocks? How about your shoes? Did you wear "teacher shoes?" If you need a good laugh, this episode is FOR …

Episode 26 Finding the Bootstraps When Staff Morale is Low

February 12th, 2019


We've all been there. Whether it's at a state, community or building level, things happen that affect our morale. Sometimes, it's really hard to come …

Episode 25 Field Trip Follies: The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

February 6th, 2019


Nothing says FUN (or mayhem) like taking 25 + kiddos to the zoo, the museum, or the farm. In this episode, we laugh, we cry, we commiserate, and we …

Episode 24 Brace Yourself & Gird Your Loins! It's Teacher Evaluation Time!

January 31st, 2019


It's teacher evaluation season. Are you crunching data? Studying Marzano? Tossing and turning at night? This episode is just for you! Join us as we …

Episode 23 When Your Classroom Management Needs Tweaking

January 24th, 2019


We've all been there! It's January, and the kiddos have returned to the classroom. Sometimes it seems like they've forgotten every routine and procedure they knew before winter break. We've got you covered with some …

Episode 22 Culturally Responsive Teaching: What If It Was MLK Jr. Day Everyday?

January 16th, 2019


Martin Luther King Jr. day is coming up, and teachers are teaching, crafting, and reading with their kids about his life. But what if we taught about the things Dr. King held near and dear to his heart throughout the …

Episode 20 A Teacher's Winter Break Potluck: Food, Booze & Books

December 18th, 2018


We've worked so hard. YOU'VE worked sooooo hard! It's time to kick your feet up, stay in your jammies all day, eat some good food, drink some yummy cocktails and read some great books. Remember? Some authors actually …

Episode 19 STOP the INSANITY! Teacher Self Care

December 11th, 2018


We might be aging ourselves, but remember that fitness guru Susan Powell and her "Stop the insanity" commercials? That sums up our teacher angst this time of year. Stop the insanity...cuz we wanna get off this bus! …

Episode 18 Fur, Feathers & Scales: Animals in Your Classroom

December 5th, 2018


Hissing cockroaches, live chickens, exploding cricket cages and more! This episode is meant for all teachers who have ever contemplated having …

Episode 17 Stem...Steam...PBL? Decoding the Acronyms

November 30th, 2018


STEM? STEAM? PBL? What's the difference? Give us a listen as we discuss the differences, the reasons for incorporating it in your classroom, as well as some practical tips and tricks for success. Let us entertain you …

Episode 16 It's A Teacher Thanksgiving!

November 14th, 2018


Mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberries and TURKEY! It's a buffet of Thanksgiving topics for teachers! We're laughing and crying our way through …

Episode 15 Attitudes of Gratitude

November 6th, 2018


Do you have an attitude of gratitude? Do your students? How do you teach gratitude? Join us as we explore books and resources for teaching gratitude, not just in November, but all year long! The research says our brains …

Episode 14 The Election: Teaching With Intention to Work Through Contention

October 30th, 2018


Join us as we explore approaches to use when you teach about the election. What happens when students have questions that are difficult to answer? …

Episode 13 Parents and Students and Teachers...OH MY!

October 23rd, 2018


It's that time of year again...parent-teacher conferences. Nothing causes sleepless nights and stomach butterflies like the anxiety we feel as we prepare for conferences. But guess what? Parents get nervous, too! And if …

Episode 12 Halloween Horror or Heaven?

October 18th, 2018


Hey there! What are you going to be for Halloween this year? Sexy pirate? Sexy witch? Sexy panda? Seriously though, come laugh and plan your Halloween survival strategies with us at We Teach So Hard. We've got you …

Episode 11 Lie #4: You're an Imposter!

October 11th, 2018


Ever feel like you're an imposter? Everyone else around you has it all together or fits the teacher mold, but you're not a REAL teacher, because …

Episode 10 Lie #3 Those Who Can't... Teach

October 2nd, 2018


Hush your mouth and raise your hand if you've ever heard the saying, "Those who can do; those who can't, teach." I know, right? Nothing makes us roll …

Episode 9, Lie #2: Nice Girls Don't Speak Up

September 25th, 2018


Girl! Shut your mouth! Ever have anyone tell you that? Nice girls don't talk politics. Nice girls don't stand up when they're being abused by …

Episode 8: The Lies Teachers Believe Series - You Are Not Enough

September 19th, 2018


Liar, liar pants on fire! We need to scream it from the rooftops! Society tells us lies about teachers, and we believe them. Join us as we explore lie #1...You are not enough. You know you believe it, at least some of …

Episode 7 Organization Intervention

September 11th, 2018


The dust has settled and the new school year has begun. Your desk is piled with papers and the name tags on your students' desks have begun to peel. …

Episode 6 Building Relationships 101

September 5th, 2018


In this latest episode of WE TEACH SO HARD, we explore ways to build relationships with parents and students and share some humor along the way. Give …

Episode 5: Great Books Can Make Your Year Stellar!

August 26th, 2018


Join WE TEACH SO HARD as we talk shop about great back-to-school reads that foster community, conversation, and collaboration. In this episode we …

Episode 4: Setting the Stage With Open House & Parent Curriculum Night

August 22nd, 2018


Got the open house blues? Got the curriculum night flop sweats? This episode is just for you! Crickets and second graders running amok work wonders …

When Your Team Isn't A Dream

August 15th, 2018


Most every teacher has encountered this: A team that isn't a dream. Sometimes, the experiences are humorous. Sometimes, they are soul-crushing. What …

Keeping It Real On The First Day Of School

August 8th, 2018


The fearsome foursome share tips and ideas for a successful first day, as well as how to wash the parent nose prints off your classroom windows. …

Episode 1: Classroom Set-up Drama

August 1st, 2018


Join us, Retta, Kathie, Tracy & Deann, as we laugh and cry over classroom set-up drama...waxed floors, no air conditioning, emergency room mishaps and mansweat! Plus, some tips for making your set up go smoother.

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