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Teaching Film Literacy Without the Film

Film literacy is an important skill in an increasingly visual world. It’s in the ELA standards for grades 7 & 8. But how do we teach it if we don’t have access to films in the classroom? Expert Frank Baker helps bring film alive without a DVD in sight.

Fireside Reads: 20 Favorite MiddleWeb Posts

With the winter “read by the fire” season in full force, we offer a selection of 20 MiddleWeb posts that have garnered thousands of views apiece. They represent the wisdom & expertise of middle grades educators with a wide range of teaching experiences.

Students Often Prefer Low Tech Learning

Today’s students have never known a time when computers didn’t exist. Many are surrounded by digital options in school as well as at home. But teacher Cheryl Mizerny has noticed her 6th graders are often drawn to low-tech learning experiences. She looks at why that might be.

Revisiting Pearl Harbor on December 7

As a collection of primary sources, My Pearl Harbor Scrapbook 1941 is truly a treasure trove, ranging from telegrams to WW II images. Reviewer Jody Passanisi, while noting its dense design and limited personal narration, recommends the book for all ages.

Campaign Ads: Helping Students Find the Truth

If politicians have a “license to lie” in campaign advertising, how are our students going to know who and what to believe? Critical thinking skills are paramount, says media literacy consultant Frank Baker, who shares insights and resources tied to Common Core and social studies standards.

When Shakespeare Meets Pop Culture in Class

Can Pop Culture and Shakespeare Exist in the Same Classroom? The answer is “yes,” says reviewer Judi Holst. All that prior knowledge can help students understand and discuss complex text. The authors show how to make complex text pop.

My Own Personal Treasure Map

Mary Tarashuk shares gems from her history curriculum treasure hunt, all discovered while surfing on the Web during her beach vacation. Her online pirate crew added to her store of resources for the year ahead and helped her strengthen her internet sea legs.

Poetry Made Delicious for You and Your Students

Shirley McPhillips’ Poem Central invites students to move through poetry that we might not know exactly how to teach and to live with those words on their own terms – not needing us to facilitate all meaning and experience for them, says Jenni Miller.