When Rita Platt assesses students using CBMs (curriculum based measures) for literacy, she gives the one-minute Oral Reading Fluency tests a twist to make sure comprehension is also being measured. Investigate her technique and a special approach devised for English Learners.
Teaching and learning in grades 4-8
A recent study found drawing can improve our memory more than re-writing or visualizing because it activates more areas of the brain. With this in mind, Megan Kelly set out to incorporate sketchnotes into her English class without it becoming “Language Arts and Crafts.”
It’s hard to strike a balance between nurturing a middle schooler and fostering independence, but they need both from adults in their lives as they toggle between childhood and adolescence. Author and middle school counselor Phyllis Fagell shares 10 ways we can help.
Matthew Kay shows how to establish and maintain a positive classroom community that allows teachers to begin to broach racial discourse with our students in a healthy and productive way. Teacher Nicole Warchol finds Not Light, But Fire “smart, supportive, and necessary.”
The Elements of Education for Teachers offers 100 pages jam-packed with easily accessible, well vetted pedagogies and practices. Each of the 50 elements is presented in a crisp two-page format. Teacher Diane Kaplan has selected several strategies to implement right away.
A librarian introduces Mary Tarashuk’s 4th graders to The Christmas Menorahs: How a Town Fought Hate. Mary builds on the true story, taking its cross cultural message to social studies and ELA, and applies its story of rededication to her own teaching.
Rural teacher Brent Gilson wants to help his 7-9 students “begin to see the world as it is and can be” before they leave school. His book clubs and writing projects will help small town kids understand more about people “who at first glance do not seem at all like them.”
Grading never goes away. But what if we approach it as a form of personal PD? Teacher Lauren Brown traces how a history assignment evolved over four years as she paid close attention to what stymied her 8th graders and adapted her instruction to support their learning.
Educators in co-teacher relationships can strengthen their interactions by adopting a spirit of gratitude, says co-teaching coach Elizabeth Stein. Research supports the idea that “gratitude” can be a powerful energizer in challenging circumstances. Try her tips.
Speculative fiction – apocalyptic, dystopian or fantasy – continues to grab the attention of middle and high school readers. ELA/EL teacher Dina Strasser also sees an opportunity for educators to explore current social issues that may be difficult to address otherwise.