Working together in small groups using a book club model has helped sixth graders in Sara Kugler’s K-6 school shift from passive and disinterested to engaged and self-reliant. They’re eager to read and ready to “talk books,” writes the literacy coach and co-teacher.
Unexpected events in classrooms steal precious teaching time and lead to frustrated students and teachers. Expected routines provide comfort and familiarity so students can focus on the challenges of learning new things. Teacher Kelly Owens shares her routine-building strategies.
Middle school educators at Brooklyn’s Ditmar IS 62 chose to overcome “learning loss” by engaging their sixth, seventh and eighth graders in a long-range project documenting the tragic story of 9/11 through research, oral family and community history and literacy activities.
This is not a casual, read-in-an-afternoon book. It is more like a math master class filled with ways to deepen students’ understanding through a problem-solving approach. Veteran math teacher Michael Hernandez highly recommends its tools and models from start to finish.
Middle school principal Evan Robb’s Six Pillars of Leadership work in concert to form a solid and lasting foundation for shared decision making. The result: a student-centered culture that values collective vision, empowerment, risk-taking, kindness, trust, equity and more.
Texas professional learning leader Valentina Gonzalez launches her new MiddleWeb blog, The UnStoppable ELL Teacher, with a look at Culturally Responsive Teaching – what it means and why it’s essential to helping English language learners succeed in American classrooms.
How much pre-teaching and context-building should teachers do when they teach novels from other cultural eras? How much is too much in a discovery-based classroom? Amber Chandler’s students helped her find the right balance as they experienced The Outsiders.
Bill Ivey, teacher and middle school dean at independent Stoneleigh-Burnham School for girls, is on a quest to increase the student voice, choice and agency in his 7th grade classroom. In this end-of-year reflection, Ivey shares some next steps he’s considering.
A multitude of authentic classroom examples and strategies make “Vocabularians” a must-have book, says ELA teacher and word nerd Amber Chandler. Author Brenda Overturf also provides realistic ways to bring schoolwide vocabulary immersion to the middle grades.
In their book Engaged, Connected, Empowered, Ben Curran and Neil Wetherbee examine five major shifts needed in education to provide students with 21st century skills. Reviewer Laura Von Staden found their work easy to follow with lots teachers can use right away.