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Black History Month All Year Long

African Americans faced severe repression when Carter G. Woodson established Negro History Week in 1926. In this updated MiddleWeb resource, we share links that trace the impact of African Americans in politics, arts and sciences, and report on the call to teach Black history throughout the school year.

Shakespeare: A Rite of Passage for 6th Graders

Jeny Randall introduces her 6th graders to Shakespeare, first tossing quotes around a circle, then character mapping, and finally prepping and presenting scenes. Keying into themes of Identity and Origin, she rotates among 3 comedies’ mistaken identities. The kids love it!

How to Build Alliances in Your Local Communities

Ron Williamson and Barbara Blackburn describe ways leaders can effectively advocate for schools by developing strategic alliances with local officials, internal groups in schools and external groups in the community. It can be time consuming but definitely worth the effort!

The Long & Winding Road to Women’s Rights

Women’s history is no longer in hiding, thanks to scholars who are documenting women’s impact on society. Middle grades teachers can help their students trace that history with these resources, just updated and expanded, for Women’s History Month and beyond.

5 Fun, Ethical Uses of AI I’ve Shared with Students

As she describes some ways she’s begun to work fun, ethical AI components into major assignments, Sarah Cooper wonders how the nature of learning and teaching will evolve in tandem with the evolution of Large Language Models. How do we best prepare our students for the future?

Empowering Kids to Help Make School Decisions

If schools are always being “held” accountable, asks leadership coach and veteran principal Matt Renwick, how will students ever learn to “be” accountable? When do they get to make important choices that affect others and themselves? Three shifts can change the paradigm.

History: Pairing Primary Sources and the Arts

Jennifer Bogard and Lisa Donovan share ways to humanize social studies and bolster student engagement with history by pairing Library of Congress primary sources and arts-integration strategies. Try their lesson plans for altered text, soundscapes, and sketching to observe.

Classroom Moves That Stimulate Kids’ Learning 

This January, don’t hastily jump on the bandwagon with the latest decorating fad. Design a place where students want to learn and grow. Your classroom environment may be one of the most powerful tools in your teaching toolbox, writes teacher and former marketer Kelly Owens.