What’s one of the best things a school day can offer? Exposure to newly learned words – provided that exposure is in context, well-timed, multisensory, and question-based. Literacy expert Amy Benjamin suggests five ways to achieve these “durable learning” goals.
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Responsive Classroom’s 50 brain breaks give kids a chance to rest their brains by redirecting their minds. Some are calming, some are energizing, and all help students refocus & release stress. Quick, easy and student approved, says teacher Linda Biondi.
How students feel about what is being taught and what they’re being asked to do works either as a catalyst or a deterrent to learning. Curtis Chandler shares activities and digital resources to help boost engagement and achievement by ’emotionalizing’ learning.
Explaining that middle school is “the unspoken linchpin in establishing a positive trajectory for career and college success,” Principal Robert Messia shares eight tested strategies for helping students understand and begin to prepare for the possibilities ahead.
Teachers have lots of justifiable reasons to complain about their jobs, says author-educator Jenny Rankin. But “loving your work and experiencing peace and success on a daily basis are certainly within your reach.” Attitude isn’t everything, she says, but it helps to avoid toxic thinking.
Social studies teacher Sarah Cooper improved classroom conversation and debate when she let students select and then rate current events articles as “super,” “okay,” or “not that great for discussion.” Cooper shares her process and some samples from each category.
Tracking progress toward a larger goal helps us build a sense of achievement and the courage to keep going. “That’s the same cycle you want to build in your students,” says Barbara Blackburn, who shares ways to help kids see their growth and recall their victories.
Traditional conferencing isn’t a good fit for Amber Chandler’s project-based classroom. She uses a version of “unconferencing” that provides flexible student support, with help available from both teacher and classmates. A detailed example explains the process.