Teachers at Florence (AL) Middle School use common planning time to discuss many instructional strategies. Once a month they look at student work together, across grades and subjects. Here, instructional coach Jill Edwards shares six video clips and related resources.
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Reading Nancie Atwell and Anne Atwell Merkel’s The Reading Zone, 2nd edition, is like getting a letter from a good friend and mentor, says ELA teacher Amy Matthes. Find reading workshop case studies to help readers become passionate, skilled, and habitual.
Increasingly information is being conveyed in visual terms, and the flashy graphics can both clarify and mislead. Media literacy expert Frank Baker has teaching ideas to help students think more deeply about the infographics and visual data flooding our brains.
Consultant Suzy Pepper Rollins loves dogs and ponies, but she’s not eager to see them in the classroom. Here she shares tips that will help principals, coaches and others who do “Learning Walks” set the stage for authentic observations of student and teacher work.
“Since many students are in my class multiple times,” writes ELL teacher Wendi Pillars, “I’m always seeking new topics to tie literacy skills together.” This year one theme was “Zero Hunger” through sustainable agriculture. A perfect hook for a unit on eating insects.
Educator James Alan Sturtevant is ready with quick, low cost or free hacks for those days when teachers need to generate curiosity and enthusiasm. His 50 tips and tools are clearly laid out and further explained through individual podcasts, says teacher Linda Biondi.
Fads are an integral part of the adolescent social fabric. Middle schoolers “embrace each passing fancy with a zeal we wish they brought to their school work,” writes Laurie Lichtenstein, leaving teachers at their mercy. Unless, of course, you turn the table.
As summer approaches, finding a balance between post-testing fluff and demanding, multi-week projects can be a challenge. Middle school teacher Cheryl Mizerny shares a bevy of her own classroom-tested activities that are brief, enjoyable and likely to spur learning.
After using Page-to-Stage Writing Workshop for Students with her 7th graders, ELA teacher Nicole Waychol is convinced that once you read the book, author Kwame Alexander is going to have you saying “yes.” Yes to jazz. Yes to writing. Yes to poetry. Yes to publishing.
Middle school behavior has more to do with neurotransmitters than hormones, says veteran teacher and consultant Thomas Armstrong. His strategies will help educators reach adolescents through both their “emotional brain’’ and the still undeveloped ‘’rational brain.’’