Add dimension to student book talks with Lynne Dorfman’s version of the Book-in-a-Bag project. And it works online, as students introduce their books by sharing a paper bag covered in images they recreate from fiction or nonfiction and by pulling out representative objects.
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What can we do to encourage kids to choose nonfiction more frequently for personal enjoyment? Cate Gerard and Sunday Cummins share what Cate discovered when interviewing middle graders about their reading habits and recommend class and virtual strategies and resources.
As many of us find ourselves thrust into the realm of distance learning, PA TOY Marilyn Pryle details how she uses two online platforms, Edmodo and Flipgrid, for intellectual and social/emotional learning. “Any tool is only as effective as how it is put to use,” she reminds us.
Middle school teacher and dean Bill Ivey shares the story of his 7th graders, gathering online for the first time. “So much going on around us is frighteningly uncertain. How we go about schooling right now is far more important than the what. Familiarity. Flexibility. Agency. Community.”
On the day after school was declared closed, ELA teacher Brent Gilson greeted students from behind a “desk wall” as they came by to pick up personal gear and borrow books from his class library. One girl’s wonderful note inspired him to write a hopeful message of his own.
Can Dr. Suess’ 70-year-old allegory The Sneetches still have an impact on children’s social and emotional learning? Surprisingly, some star-bellied creatures made a lasting impression in Mary Tarashuk’s fourth grade class during her NON-fiction research unit this winter.
It’s amazing to think – with all the digital tools we have at our disposal – that genuine communication is more difficult today than ever before. Yet that’s our reality, says middle grades teacher Jeremy Hyler, at school and at home, with students, parents and colleagues.
Math teacher Robert Kaplinsky wanted his students debating about the best way to solve a problem, using strategic thinking and not just the formula. He also wanted to know when students had misconceptions so he could reshape his lessons. His solution? Open Middle Math.
Are students who increasingly communicate through bits of digital text missing the chance to develop live conversation skills? In her middle grades classroom, Nancy Costanzo has crafted strategies to help kids both deepen their understanding and become skilled conversationalists.
Help middle graders connect past and present using the easy-to-understand lessons in Hands-On Archaeology. Teacher educator Linda Biondi says the authors show us how giving kids opportunities to ‘dig’ in and out of class can build team skills and cross-curricular learning.