Category: Articles

How a Tiny Spark Can Ignite Student Writing

K-6 literacy coach and NBCT Paula Bourque brings an extra spark to quick-write activities, expanding the concept to include brief low-pressure assignments designed to ignite passion, creativity, and awareness in students and encourage them to become lifelong writers.

A Fresh Approach to Middle School Behavior

What mix of behavior strategies can build happier, higher achieving middle schools? Principal Michael Gaskell shares customized PBIS methods his New Jersey school uses to help students stay in school, develop positive mentor relationships, and achieve greater success.

Overcoming Myths about “Being Good at Math”

Imagine the long-term benefits if teachers, schools, and educator prep programs address the issue of mathematical confidence in a systematic and vigorous way. Jerry Burkhart looks at causes of low “math self-esteem” among kids and teachers and outlines potential cures.

10 Genius Picture Books for Genius Hour Kids

Picture books make for great hooks at the beginning of lessons – capturing our attention and get us curious for the learning to come. They can also be perfect tools for introducing Genius Hour concepts. GH evangelists Gallit Zvi and Denise Krebs choose 10 favorites.

Start the Lesson Strong with Pre-Assessments

Prior to teaching your lessons, it’s important to gauge where students are in their knowledge of the topic. Instructional expert Barbara Blackburn suggests trying student-friendly strategies for pre-assessment – quick teacher-directed options or focused formal pre-tests.

Teach Media Literacy with Super Bowl Ads

Many millions of people who tune in to the 2019 Super Bowl will be there to watch the pricey, high-engagement commercials. Media literacy consultant Frank Baker explains how to teach about these “super ads,” approaching them as informational text worthy of close scrutiny and analysis.

Teaching Climate Change in the Middle Grades

Facilitating science-based research around real world problems empowers students through the skills they acquire and the subject knowledge they gain, says teacher Angela Duke. And what better topic than climate change? “The environment of the future will be theirs to live in.”