Whether they are fiction or nonfiction, the best stories are told through mood as we react to events, people and emotions. For students, identifying, tracking and exploring moods in stories and images is an easy way to enter into text. Teacher Trevor Bryan shares his approach.
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Reshma Saujani offers insights about what it means for girls to be brave but not perfect. Teachers can pass her ideas on to their students, writes educator Bill Ivey, whether by internalizing them and sharing when needed or by actually studying Saujani’s book in class or in clubs.
Among the outdated teaching still found in schools, coach and NBCT Elizabeth Stein singles out round robin or popcorn reading for immediate elimination. Other research-based strategies can easily be substituted and lead to a more effective and just learning environment.
Giving students tools to slice into a text and formulate specific thoughts backed with evidence has transformed NBCT Marilyn Pryle’s classroom discussions. “Instead of tentative guesses from a few, we now have detailed conversations that draw the whole class in.”
Respectful, fruitful collaboration among students is not “nice” for kids to master before they make their own way in the world – it is absolutely necessary. It’s especially needed when problems arise. Dina Strasser suggests co-creating norms that serve the whole child.
Julie M. Wilson explains how to lead educators through change and also looks at how leaders can sustain their effort by taking her readers on a leadership version of The Hero’s Journey. Principal Michael Whisler particularly liked her Strengths-based Conversation script.
Simply making content available to students is not enough. We have to make it accessible to each and every one, including English learners. Specialist Valentina Gonzalez offers ways to identify obstacles to accessibility and create paths to learning in every subject.
Systemic change is still needed to shift stereotypes and achieve equity and equality in STEM fields, writes middle school science educator Cristina Veresan. But educators can make a difference by exposing students to “everyday” science superheroes who defy typecasting.
Michelle Russell says her classes were beginning the slide into pre-Spring Break slump when she opted to try some math games she’d been squirreling away for “later.” Both the Math Card War and One Incorrect activities proved engaging and useful as formative feedback.
Giving students examples of how to fight against hate and injustice and for their rights and the rights of their fellow human beings is critical to a healthy democracy. Rita Platt shines a light on Jewish, black, and native American freedom fighters and protestors.