Reading “Not Light, But Fire” inspired Sarah Cooper to change the way she frames conversations about current events and history – which very often involve race, ethnicity, religion, politics and other incendiary topics – to build understanding, not emotion.
One of the most common concerns Sarah Tantillo hears from ELA teachers is “I want to teach grammar, but I’m not sure how to fit it in.” Her new MiddleWeb post explains a systematic approach that blends grammar into narrative reading and writing classes, day by day.
If every elementary, English and history teacher did even one of the book’s activities each year, our understanding of our students would deepen immeasurably, as would their appreciation of their families and their communities, both local and global, writes Sarah Cooper.
Studying TV in the middle grades might seem frivolous, writes media literacy expert Frank Baker, but when teachers engage kids through popular culture, they meet them where they are. The Emmys is a perfect example. Baker has background and teaching ideas to get started.
After five years, 6th grade teacher and NWP activist Kevin Hodgson is retiring his popular Working Draft column for MiddleWeb. In entry 72 he shares links to favorite posts and highlights three central principles about writing that have guided his blogging and teaching.
GIFs are great teaching tools. The brief videos can bring out the ideas and creativity of students too. Megan Kelly shares how kids can make GIFs with a helpful tutorial and where in the curriculum they belong: ELA, science, social studies math, PE – everywhere!
Larry Ferlazzo and Katie Sypnieski provide ELL students the chance to read high-interest books independently. Literary conversations help ELLs interact with the texts, creating a classroom culture of shared literacy. The co-authors share six creative activities.
More emphasis on STEM studies has more language arts teachers working to integrate compatible nonfiction. But what about fiction? Megan Kelly shows how novels with STEM themes let students make an emotional connection to characters while learning scientific concepts.
With sensitivity and practicality, Sarah Cooper takes on the heightened challenge of teaching civics and governance to today’s adolescents. Fellow middle grades teacher Heather Wolpert-Gawron finds practical strategies and lessons that can be used across the curriculum.
Looking for books that might inspire or help you grow as an educator? Perhaps you’ll find one in this winter reading collection, chosen from among our 2017 MiddleWeb book reviews. We’ve included content area titles, teaching strategies, leadership tips, and more.