Jane A. G. Kise

Jane A. G. Kise, EdD, is a consultant with extensive experience in professional development for instructional coaching, differentiation, and effective mathematics instruction. Other areas of expertise include leadership development and coaching, strategic planning, team building, and conflict resolution.
View full profile

Is Every Student Shakespeare-Ready?

Doable Differentiation: Is Every Student “Shakespeare-Ready”?

Categories: Authors

When I was young enough to still need a babysitter, my parents gave me a choice. I could go with them to a live production of Shakespeare’s “The Taming of the Shrew” and sit in the balcony with one of my big brothers (I have four). Or, they’d find a babysitter. My dad quipped, “A ticket will cost less than a sitter, so it’s up to you.” Well, my brother was on leave from the military. A whole evening with him sounded better than a babysitter.

We had a great view of the thrust stage, but when the play began, I could not understand the actors. Looking at the prologue now, I still can’t quite fathom lines like, “Therefore paucas pallabris, let the world slide. Sessa!” (Prologue, scene 1, line 3).

I certainly wasn’t going to admit I’d made the wrong choice, and I couldn’t leave, so I kept watching and listening. So, as the audience laughed and my brother leaned forward, I did the same.

About 15 minutes in, a funny thing happened. The play started making sense! The story line wasn’t all that different from the silly old movies we watched as a family. Yes! I can do Shakespeare! I realized. I’m not recommending you take a group of 10-year-olds to see a play that needs a whole lot of explanation about gender roles and misogyny, but I will ask you this: at what grade level do you think the students you teach would be ready to study a Shakespearean play? Read more

Two students, one with a pink brain, and one with a blue brain

Coaches, Remember: Gender Equity is for Everyone!

Categories: School Improvement

Based on Step In, Step Up: Empowering Women for the School Leadership Journey

At the age of five, girls believe that girls and boys are equally likely to be “really, really smart.” Just a year later, though, at age six, girls are less likely than boys to believe that members of their own gender are “really, really smart.” And then, they begin avoiding games and activities that are labeled as being for the “really, really smart” (Bian, Leslie, and Campion, 2017).

Instructional coaches—not to mention school leaders—should be alarmed that this change in self-efficacy takes place during a girl’s first year of formal schooling. Gina Rippon (2019), in her book The Gendered Brain, documents more studies showing that teachers give higher grades to boys than girls, compared to when the same work is scored by objective, outside graders. Girls, by age nine, are less likely than boys to say that they may take advanced math classes, even though their math scores indicate they are doing just as well as or better than boys, and that boys overrate their science and math skills while girls underrate theirs. We have a gender gap, and it starts early. Read more

Support Women in School Leadership

Playing “Yes, And…” to Support Women in School Leadership

Categories: School Improvement

Based on Step In, Step Up

I first learned about women not supporting other women in leadership back in college. As my friend and I, duly-elected treasurers of our women’s dormitory, fought the cold winds of a January day in Minnesota, trudging the mile to the bank with heavy backpacks full of coins to deposit from the snack machines, we laughed about the feedback the dorm officers had just gotten. Read more