Preparing To Teach Like A Pirate!

23 July 2015 / 8 comments

I've been hearing about Dave Burgess' book Teach Like A Pirate for awhile now, and it sounded like my kind of book. The title alone peeks my curiosity.  Teach like a pirate?  Can I dress up? Wear an eye patch every day?  That would be so cool!

I finally downloaded a copy to read on a recent airplane trip.  This is the perfect travel book. It's a quick, easy, engaging read I promise!

I will tell you as a primary teacher I wasn't sure at first if I would be able to find content from a high school teacher that would translate.  Boy was I wrong!

One of my favorite quotes from the book comes from the Ask and Analyze chapter:

As we are preparing for the new school year, a new unit or lesson we need to ask ourselves the right questions to spark our creativity.   Your initial response might be, "Well, that's great, but what questions are those?"  The fantastic thing is Burgess gives them to you!   And he gives you lots of them! The entire second half of the books is dedicated to providing you a toolbox or "treasure chest" if we are thinking like pirates, of strategies and questions to help you start engaging in the creative process as you plan!

Here are just a few examples of some of his questions to ask yourself as you are preparing:

  • How can I incorporate movement into this lesson?
  • How can I use students as props, inanimate objects, or concepts?
  • Where would be the best place on campus to deliver the content?
  • How can I show my students why learning this content is important in the real world?

There are many, many more questions like these along with specific examples. The book is a true inspiration to get you thinking more creatively and to start preparing and teaching like a pirate! I highly suggest you take the time to dive into this book.  I will leave you with another quote from the book that spoke to me:
"Students will do amazing things if you can design a class and environment that is positive and empowering.  Rising up to and overcoming challenges, building lifetime relationships, and forging positive connections to school won't directly result in better test scores.  It will result in better people.  Isn't that really what we are trying to accomplish?"
2 Smart Wenches has a series of posts on teaching like a pirate and even includes a fantastic freebie that includes the hooks from the book.
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Stephanie from 3rd Grade Thoughts has also put together a great post on this topic so be sure to check it out also.
Click Image To See Her Post
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Hope you are inspired to go out and start preparing to teach like a pirate!


  1. Love your post, Kim. I purchased the book this summer and still have it on my to read list! Just the push I needed!

    1. Awesome Susan! I bought the e-book at first, but I have ordered the real deal so I can mark it up and refer back to it more easily. Hope you enjoy it!

  2. This book is definitely on my reading list in the near future!!

    1. Julie- it was a quick fun read! I hope you like it as much as I did!

  3. Thank you, Kim!! I really appreciate you writing about glad you enjoyed it!!

    1. Wow! Dave so cool of you to stop by! Just love the book. Your enthusiasm is catching! I wish my son could have been a student in one of your classes! Keep up the great work!

  4. Interesting article with many useful tips which can be put into practice. I am very grateful to you for sharing this wonderful post!
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    1. Kathleen- So glad you found it useful. The book is really an excellent resources and very inspiring!


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