Teaching and learning in grades 4-8

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Use Writing Activities to Bond with New Students

“One of the most important factors in student achievement is a positive connection with the teacher,” says teaching consultant Barbara Blackburn. “An easy way to bond with kids is through writing.” She suggests two activities students will enjoy and you will learn from.

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10 Steps to Closer Student Reading

What do your students need to succeed in close reading? Literacy consultant Nancy Boyles outlines 10 steps in this article, drawn from her recent Corwin book “Closer Reading.” She also includes five questions to consider before students get started.

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My Own Personal Treasure Map

Mary Tarashuk shares gems from her history curriculum treasure hunt, all discovered while surfing on the Web during her beach vacation. Her online pirate crew added to her store of resources for the year ahead and helped her strengthen her internet sea legs.

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Smart Homework: How to Manage & Assess It

In his final article on smart homework, middle grades teaching expert Rick Wormeli suggests ways to assess take-home assignments and manage the steady flow of “product” that homework requirements generate. Bonus idea: Homework extension certificates.

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Poetry Made Delicious for You and Your Students

Shirley McPhillips’ Poem Central invites students to move through poetry that we might not know exactly how to teach and to live with those words on their own terms – not needing us to facilitate all meaning and experience for them, says Jenni Miller.