The Genius of Luther’s Small Catechism

Bernard Bull The Lutheran Educator Leave a Comment

The year 1529 represents a landmark moment in the history of religious instruction. In that year, Luther’s Small Catechism was first released, inspired by Martin Luther’s assessment and concern of doctrinal knowledge at the time. As he, Melanchthon, and others surveyed the state of churches and schools, they found pastors largely uninformed and entire congregations steeped in superstition and ignorance …

rubrics

Grading Rubrics in Your Classroom: Benefits, Downsides, and Tips

Bernard Bull The Lutheran Educator Leave a Comment

Those of us in education often struggle with competing values. There are realities to consider, such as the fact that some teachers are working with large class sizes and schedules that make it hard to devote significant time to each piece of student work. From this perspective, we look for assessment strategies that decrease grading time and increase efficiency for the teacher. …

feedback

The Busy Teacher’s Guide to Giving Ample Feedback

Bernard Bull The Lutheran Educator Leave a Comment

Out of decades of research about what does and doesn’t work in education, only a small number of ideas are almost universally accepted. Feedback is one of them. We need feedback to learn, and this is true in and out of the classroom. Sometimes the feedback is subtle or so integrated into the experience that we don’t recognize it, but it …

Three Uses of Portfolios in the Lutheran School and Classroom

Bernard Bull The Lutheran Educator Leave a Comment

Last year I had the joy of working with a group of colleagues on a task force about portfolios in education, especially as we are finding that different groups at the university use different software packages. While our task was largely focused on providing advice on policy and practice in reviewing and selecting portfolio software options, we also took the time …

checkups

Checkups and Autopsies in the Classroom

Bernard Bull The Lutheran Educator Leave a Comment

I think you will agree that checkups and autopsies are two completely different things. They serve different purposes. They meet different needs. You might be wondering what in the world I’m writing here, but stay with me and I’ll explain the important lesson we can glean from this. The first is all about determining a person’s health and then responding …

faith questions

The Dinosaur Box and Student Faith Questions

Bernard Bull The Lutheran Educator Leave a Comment

During my first year as a teacher, I had the joy of working with seventh and eighth graders. One of the things I most enjoyed about teaching this age was their wonderful curiosity. I’ve taught students from middle school all the way through graduate school, and I still find that middle school students ask some of the most interesting questions. …

objective truth

Objective and Subjective Truth in the Classroom

Bernard Bull The Lutheran Educator Leave a Comment

Over the last month, I’ve been spending fifteen to twenty minutes on apologetics with my twelve-year-old daughter each night. We do it right after our family bedtime devotions. We are working through a selection of about forty short lessons. As I explained to my daughter, we are directed in 1 Peter 3:15 to “honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being …