Lesson design differs from lesson planning, says this teacher/coach/consultant team. While both are essential, design is a creative process that makes sure we consider the learning needs of both students and teachers. Included: design template; questioning and feedback charts.
Teaching and learning in grades 4-8
Middle schoolers encounter and process information in ever-changing ways, writes teacher Jason DeHart, who uses podcasting opportunities in his ELA classroom to teach fluency, explore genre, and engage with authors and authentic audiences. Learn about his six-step strategy.
Prior to 9/11, Barbara Blackburn’s first choice when crisis and tragedy impacted the classroom was to allow an open discussion. After an inappropriate statement by a student shut down communication, she began to develop more tractable writing strategies, which she shares here.
Andi McNair’s Genius Hour (2nd Ed) guides educators across grade levels and content areas in developing student Passion Projects start to finish. Reviewer Stephanie Choate gives high marks to the book’s 6-point strategy: passion, plan, pitch, project, product, and presentation.
Want to start a writing club to reach beyond curriculum boundaries and provide a comfortable, social experience for all writers? Sharon Ratliff did just that and shares what worked for students as they took the lead in setting it up and now meet regularly across grade levels.
Don’t devote all your class prep time to the start and middle of lessons, says teaching expert Curtis Chandler. Closure is critical if the learning is going to stick. See his wide selection of quick and meaningful wrap-ups to reinforce each lesson, including student favorites.
“I read professional books like movie critics watch films: with a critical lens and respect for my time,” writes veteran principal Matt Renwick. “If I am going to dedicate hours to a text that is supposed to help me improve as an educational leader, it needs to deliver.”
Nancy Akhavan’s Literacy Walks is well organized, concise and thorough in its explanation of the walk-through process at school and district levels. Its insights about trust, judgment and effective collaboration will also be valuable to coaches and PLCs, writes Beth Hassinger.
Making her first forays into using AI in lesson planning, NBCT Kathleen Palmieri is amazed at ChatGPT’s grade level suggestions based on lesson plan objectives. Follow along as she shows how the chatbot developed math and social studies material attuned to her fifth graders.
Teacher and coach Mona Iehl shows how using one high quality math task enables educators to better meet all students’ needs without the alienating effects of some differentiation strategies such as ability grouping or creating activities at varying degrees of difficulty.