We might think a new school year should start off with solemnity. But that’s not the message teacher Heather Wolpert-Gawron has garnered from her survey of 6-12th graders across the country. Students learn more when teachers share their humanity and their humor ASAP.
Middle school behavior has more to do with neurotransmitters than hormones, says veteran teacher and consultant Thomas Armstrong. His strategies will help educators reach adolescents through both their “emotional brain’’ and the still undeveloped ‘’rational brain.’’
Discussing political news in class continues to feel like “walking on glass barefoot,” says Sarah Cooper. She’s drawn toward humorous interpretations of current events to reduce tensions. After some trial and error, Cooper uses four criteria for video selection.
Sarah Cooper’s spring U.S. history classes provided a dress rehearsal for the upcoming fall election season. Here are six classroom-tested strategies she plans to use during Constitution studies as her middle schoolers experience America’s often volatile political process first-hand.
Where does humor fit into the classroom? Just about anywhere! Check out these refreshed resources on why humor works, how to share it, and where to find it. Funny math, ELA, social studies, and science resources abound.
The winter doldrums that threaten many classrooms can be blown away with fresh teaching ideas, humor, movement and more. Middle level educator Cheryl Mizerny shares suggestions for enlivening the weeks that fill the calendar between the holidays and spring break.
After 20+ years of teaching, Cheryl Mizerny knows middle school is where she’s meant to be. In her first post at “It’s Not Easy Being Tween” Mizerny shares six aspects of young adolescents that make middle-level teaching the toughest job she’s ever loved.
Whether you’re a principal, staff developer or teacher leader, you’ll find ideas to convey your PD message effectively in this checklist adapted from “The Ten-Minute Inservice” by experts Todd Whitaker and Annette Breaux. One tip: Walk your talk.
Sue Stephenson’s Kidding Around is overflowing with ideas for teachers who would like to add more humor and fun to their classrooms and want to help kids understand how they can promote their own happiness, says reviewer Jennifer Underwood. Also available in Spanish.
Loaded with ideas for blending fun and joy into the serious business of learning, the new book Serious Fun: Practical Strategies to Motivate and Engage Students is easy to read and ready to use in the classroom, says reviewer Laura Von Staden.