Teaching and learning in grades 4-8

3 Ways My Students Assess Their Progress

Positive and constructive self-assessments are what Mary Tarashuk wants for her fourth graders. Recently they used reflective writing to consider their own progress (and the progress of their class) more realistically, and to learn to set personal goals for growth.

Media Literacy: Learning from the Oscars

It’s Oscar season and media literacy consultant Frank W. Baker has ideas about leveraging student interest in movies to teach visual literacy skills and learn about cool careers. Lots of resources, including teacher tools at the Oscars website.

Are We Covering or Are Students Discovering?

Rather than “covering” a curriculum with instruction that’s driven by the chapters in a textbook, Diana Fenton and Nancy Van Erp advocate student centered standards-based lesson planning, relying on frameworks like Understanding by Design and concept-based teaching.

The Long & Winding Road to Women’s Rights

Women’s history is no longer in hiding, thanks to scholars who are documenting women’s impact on society. Middle grades teachers can help their students trace that history with these resources, just updated and expanded, for Women’s History Month and beyond.

Active Learning Ideas for the Middle Grades

The fully developed strategies and techniques Susan Edwards offers in Active Learning in the Middle Grades Classroom are simple to use and will have students engaged in active, purposeful learning across content areas, says teaching consultant Anne Anderson.

Students Learn from Inquiry, Not Interrogation

Jackie Walsh shares resources and strategies teachers can use to partner with students and create new roles and responsibilities in classroom questioning. Replace traditional “interrogation” with methods of inquiry that reveal understanding and strengthen learning.