Wednesday, August 31, 2022

A Writing Prompt to Really Get To Know Your Students

"Three Things I Want You To Know About Me."
I came up with this prompt while teaching high school, but it works with younger kids, too. It gives the students a choice of what to comment on, and allows them to use their own voice to tell it like it feels. You may learn a lot about music, sports, and their dog; but sometimes you will also learn about very serious topics like family crisis or illness. And at times the school can help the families. But you will know the students better, especially if you actually read the essays and comment on them. The kids feel very validated, and more willing to write the remainder of the year no matter what the topic.

Jim Abbott of the Yankees, pitching a no-hitter.
I especially enjoyed when the students shared their dreams for their future. You would be amazed how many major league baseball players (of the future) were in my seventh grade classes. Far be it from me to say otherwise. Who knows, anyway? If Jim Abbott, who had only one hand due to a birth defect, became a major league pitcher, shouldn't I be like his grown-ups and be filled with encouragement for kids' dreams?

Wednesday, June 8, 2022

Educational Links 6/8/22

Teaching Students Inclusion and Anti-Bias: What Works



4 Ways States Are Exerting More Control Over Classroom Materials

How language-rich math can help students learning English

Authenticity Matters: 12 Ideas To Make Learning ‘Real-World’

This Year’s High School Seniors Reflect on the Adversity They Faced and How They Persevered

Reinforcing Elementary Math Lessons With Movement

Combining simple exercises with math instruction can help ensure that elementary school students remember these lessons.

Monday, June 6, 2022

Educational Links 6/6/22


No, Fewer Books, Less Writing Won’t Add Up to Media Literacy

Edtech Should Be More Evidence-Driven

3 Trademarks of an Effective IEP Goal

How To Handle An Argumentative Student

5 Toxic Phrases To Stop Using With Your Students

Education Buzzwords Defined: What Is Blended Learning?

See how blended learning—a combination of online activities and face-to-face teaching—helps teachers differentiate instruction and spend more time with students.

Friday, June 3, 2022

Educational Links 6/4/22

America’s Obsessed With Guns and Violence. And Schools Are the Target


EL, high-poverty students struggle to access appropriate virtual learning workspaces

Great Books to Read on the Beach, in a Treehouse, or Under the Covers

Summer learning programs for kids who learn and think differently

How To Reduce Your Teacher Workload

3 Ways Administrators Can Include Teachers in Decision-Making

Administrators can strengthen relationships at their schools by inviting teachers to participate in the decisions that concern them most.

Friday, May 27, 2022

Educational Links 5/26/22


House subcommittee hearing explores teacher shortage solutions

War, Crisis, Tragedy: How to talk with kids when the news is scary

Creating Safe Environments for Students Recovering From Trauma

Helping Children Cope After a Traumatic Event

What Are The Best Alternatives To Lecture In Teaching?

Parents: Summer Ways to Prepare for a Better School Year

How to talk to your students about trauma and school violence

Students are likely to be anxious, scared, and feeling uncertain in the wake of the nation's latest school shooting, this time in Uvalde, Texas--here's how to help them process the events

Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Educational Links 5/24/22

How Changing Schools’ Culture of Discipline Paves the Way for Inclusivity

Survey: Third of students reluctant to seek help for mental health issues

Anxiety in Children

Fostering Identity, Joy, and Skill Development

How a teacher used a mini-unit featuring poetry, music, and art to help her third-grade students learn more about themselves and each other.

Monday, May 23, 2022

Teaching Is Finishing Strong (updated)


4 Activities to Encourage End-of-Year Reflections

Finishing the School Year Strong 

End of Year Activities

Tips to Wrap Up the School Year! 

Top 12 Effective End of the Year Activities

The Last 40 Days Until Summer 

8 Activities to Make the Last Days of School Memorable and Fun 

How to Stay Charged During the Final Weeks of School 


Mom, I'm Bored--What Can I Do? (updated)

1. Reading Quest

2. Summer Science Projects 

3. Search Nature Activity Hands-on Activities

4. Summer Stargazing 

5. 45 Fun Summer Crafts for Tweens

6. 100+ Things for Teens to Do This Summer

7. Summer Reading Recommendations