Trevor Barton

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Trevor Barton

Trevor Barton received his BA in English at UNC Chapel Hill and his MAT at Converse College. He teaches at an inner-city elementary school in Greenville, S.C.


Pages authored by Trevor Barton

Blog post
Title Body
Each Student Has a Story to Tell "We all have a story to tell." These are the words that will greet my new elementary students as they enter my classroom this year.  I will tell...
Fourth graders and the 14th Amendment As a teacher, I wonder how my students and their families think about the Constitution. Do they think of it only as a historical document, unchanging...
Helping Students Build a World Without Hate Brenda is a fourth-grader at my elementary school in South Carolina. Her father and mother moved here from Mexico, and Brenda speaks Spanish at home...
Become an “Ecolutionary” Ron Finley inspired me. He calls himself an "ecolutionary” because he plants and tends gardens in South Central Los Angeles, bringing produce—and...
Reflections of a ‘Teacher of the Year’ The announcement was broadcast at the end of the day over the school’s public address system. "Our Teacher of the Year for 2013-2014 is...Mr. Barton...
Galimoto Connects Students to the World Last Christmas, I received a galimoto, a toy vehicle made by children from sticks, cornstalks, wire or other materials. Mine is a bicycle made of...
Helping Boys Become Readers Many boys at my school struggle with reading. Most are more interested in video games and outdoor activities than books. Our school is not an anomaly...
Finding the Best Teacher Voice for Students During my first year as a second-grade teacher, I struggled with classroom management. I am a soft-spoken person by nature and habit. I didn't have...
iPad Project Seeks to Level Educational Field This year our school district launched an iPad initiative for the kindergarten teachers and students at our Title I elementary school. That is...
Tending to Our Students Before Tragedy Strikes The e-mail message was direct and devastating. One of our fourth-graders had been killed in a gun accident. “Davius had gone to a friend's house to...
Homeless is Not So Far Away My students had questions about the central character in the story Fly Away Home written by Eve Bunting and illustrated by Ronald Himler. And even as...
Celebrating Leo and the Special Olympics Every morning, Leo's smile brightens the cafeteria at my elementary school. He hobbles in, holding his teacher's hand. His eyes squint at the bright...
Out With Pizza, In With Veggies, Black Beans Something was different at the school cafeteria. The menu included a vegetarian meal of elbow macaroni with cheddar cheese and broccoli. There was...
Treasure the Differences in Marvin I hear it now and then. It invariably comes after a long day in an elementary school classroom, a day that seems like a year.  Teacher Trevor...
See the Riches Students in Poverty Bring Editor’s Note: Last month, Teaching Tolerance launched a new series of lessons called Issues of Poverty. This week’s featured lesson can be found...
Larry Doby Hits One for History It was Black History Month. I was working with children and youth in an after-school program in the Clarksdale housing projects in Louisville, Ky....
Revealing Magical Powers in Reading This year is the 50th anniversary of Roald Dahl's classic children's book James and the Giant Peach. In the story, 7-year-old orphan James Henry...
Getting Past the Joy of Consumerism I asked a small group of second-graders what they would like to find inside their mailboxes. That was after we read a story about a goose who opened...
Challenging Conventional Homework Wisdom "Mr. Barton, I have some homework for you," said Alandra. "But I left it at home on the table." "No problem," I answered. "Just bring it whenever you...
When the Law Threatens Student Safety Editor’s Note: The Southern Poverty Law Center has filed suit in South Carolina challenging SB 20. I wish I could introduce Santos to many residents...
Reminding Students of America’s Diverse Beauty Editor’s Note: As the country approaches the 10th anniversary of 9/11, Teaching Tolerance bloggers have written about their insights and experiences...
Growing a Heart is Simple Teaching can be humanizing work. This is how it happens. The Rodriguez family walks down the hall and turns the corner to my room. "Buenos Dias,...
Helping Fellow Teachers Through the Hard Times "I'm done," I could have said. "Finished." I felt I had potential as a teacher during my master’s degree coursework. "You have the building blocks...
Music Creates Wonder and Learning "We the people, in order to form a more perfect union..." I heard these words for the first time in a song when I was a kid. I was pouring a glass...
Helping Billy Inherit the Earth Billy was 7 years old when he walked through the door of my second- grade classroom. The cowlick in his hair wouldn't stay down. His shirt and shorts...
Books Can Build a Bridge of Understanding "Sticks and stones may break my bones but names will never hurt me." I was sitting outside on the playground bench wiping the tears of a child when...
The Transformation of Hate “Dad, what is the Clue Clux Clan,” asked my 10-year-old son Bakary as we sat under a shade tree on Saturday in Montgomery, Ala. We were waiting to...
‘How do YOU dismantle the 'isms'? The question above was posed to me in the comments section of a blog post I wrote recently. The post was entitled "Imani and the Cabbage Seeds." In...
Advocate Now for Head Start Thursday and Friday mornings, I have cafeteria duty at my elementary school. I always smile when our younger students come through the breakfast line...
Imani and the Cabbage Seeds Imani walked down the hall with a paper cup in her hands. She stopped and held up the cup to me. Inside of its paper walls were soil, water, and...
Unlocking the Brilliant Corners B loves bugs. I met him during the first week of school as I conducted the standard assessment of how many words he could read per minute from a...
Finding Joy in the School’s ‘Mixing Cup’ One of my favorite places in the world is the classroom across the hall from me. This room full of wonderful children and teachers is affectionately...
Riding the Bus to Equality Every morning at 7:15, the doors of our school open wide to a line of bus riders ready to come inside. "Hello, Jaheem. Hi, Kiara. Hey, Imani. Hope...
Helping Immigrant Children Build a Better Life I love to receive letters. When I was a little boy, I lived on a straight street where I could see the mail truck coming from a long way off. After...
Seeing Economic Justice for All In early 1968, Martin Luther King Jr. and other civil rights leaders continued plans for a Poor People’s Campaign. It would take place in the spring...
Saying ‘Thank You’ to All the Ms. Sandras Every school day just after 2 p.m., Sandra pushes her cart into my classroom to clean the bathroom and empty the trash cans. She is the school...
Listening for the Civil War’s True Legacy I walked down the newly plowed row with my grandpa, feeling the warm, red clay on the soles of my bare feet and listened to his stories and words of...
Teaching As Human Rights Work Abel Barrera Hernández has worked tirelessly to bring justice to some of Mexico’s most marginalized communities. For his work as founder and director...
Helping All Kinds of Families It was meet-the-teacher night at my elementary school. The room was ready for a new class of second-graders. The rubric for grading paragraphs and...
Recognizing Greatness in A First-Grader There is a wonderful scene in Harper Lee's novel To Kill A Mockingbird where the all-white jury has returned an unjust verdict against Tom Robinson....
Reading Time With an Unexpected Twist We made a circle for our guided reading time. I sat down in my trusty old Hinkle rocking chair, and my students sat down crisscross applesauce on...
The Pages in the Book Go Flip, Flip, Flip My elementary school is a Title I school. About 95 percent of our students qualify for free and reduced lunch and Medicaid. Research shows us that...