Effective group work sparks student engagement and builds communication skills for the future. But how do teachers structure teamwork activities so kids are cooperative and everyone learns? Instructional expert Barbara Blackburn offers a step-by-step blueprint.
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Being a school leader is incredibly demanding, requiring principals to stay current on education trends while managing day to day operations. Williamson and Blackburn share five actionable trends they’ve observed in their work with middle grades leaders.
In “Standing in the Gap” Lisa Dabbs and Nicol R. Howard encourage all educators, especially new teachers, to find support by connecting on social media, using internet resources in class, and facilitating e-communication with parents. A must read, says educator/writer Mary Langer Thompson.
Annual resolutions to “get organized” usually fade quickly, despite ready access to smart devices and clever management apps. What we need, writes organizing expert Frank Buck, is some good advice. He begins his 5-part series with the digital calendar.
Principals can use social media to improve communication, provide information during school safety situations, increase collaboration, and enhance professional development. Ron Williamson and Barbara Blackburn argue, in fact, that social media is a leadership essential today.
Help middle graders take the next step in environmental studies & awareness. Using USDA resource materials, students can join the effort to uncover and eradicate the invasive Asian Longhorned Beetle which threatens 70% of the tree canopy in the United States.
If demoralizing teachers worked, then our educational system would already have reached a state of perfection. Instead, says reviewer Jenni Miller, policymakers can find a true roadmap for change in Richard DuFour’s “In Praise of American Educators And How They Can Become Even Better.”
The difficulty students have in writing clearly can be traced to many factors, says literacy consultant Sarah Tantillo, from muddled pre-CCSS standards to weak teaching practices. Here she offers concrete suggestions to correct persistent writing problems in the secondary grades.
Educators may be reluctant to try memoir writing with middle grades students, but the rewards are considerable, says 8th grade teacher-author Jake Wizner. He shares three insights that can help guide teachers as they enrich the student writing experience.
Knowing how television programming is funded can help students understand what is available to view. Media literacy expert Frank W. Baker links to sources of advertising data and suggests activities to build student savvy about the genres that fill their screens.