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Archive for the ‘Instruction&Curriculum’ Category

  • Decomposing Fractions: An Alternative for Converting Improper Fractions to Mixed Numbers

    on Feb 9, 16 • in Featured, Instruction&Curriculum, Instructional Strategies, Mathematics • with Comments

    Michelle 1

    I, like many elementary teachers across the nation, have found myself teaching math concepts to 4th and 5th-grade students that were once taught to middle school students. Truth be told, when I first began teaching these skills I must admit I was very skeptical about teaching multiplying fractions and whole numbers to 4th and 5th graders. As I grew more comfortable with the idea that I have to teach my 4th and 5th graders these complex concepts I decided to find ways that made the transition seamless. I currently work in Texas but my first

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  • 30 Picture Books for Black History Month

    on Feb 8, 16 • in Current Events in Education, Featured, Instructional Strategies, Literacy • with Comments


    First, let’s get something obvious out of the way. Black history is American history. It shouldn’t be relegated to one month out of the year. It should be taught every day. That said, that’s just not happening in K-12 classrooms today. So until that happens, I feel Black History Month is not only worth celebrating, but necessary. Too many students enter my classroom with little awareness of Black history beyond Martin Luther King, Jr. and Rosa Parks. So here are 30 (not 28 or 29) children’s books to help celebrate (Spoiler: You won’t find any

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  • Using Reader’s Notebooks in Middle School

    on Feb 5, 16 • in Featured, Instruction&Curriculum, Literacy • with Comments

    a glimpse of our Reader Notebooks

    I’ve been approached by many teachers who ask me, if you don’t use reading logs to monitor how much your students are reading, what do you use? My solution has been to run a Reader’s Workshop in my classroom where all my students keep a reader’s notebook. According to experts like Penny Kittle, Donalyn Miller, and Kelly Gallagher, giving students choice in what they read is paramount in getting kids to read more and to read better. While I would love to institute a full-blown Reader’s Workshop in my classroom, I have other curriculum requirements

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  • But What if They Reflect?

    on Feb 3, 16 • in Current Events in Education, Elementary Classrooms, Management • with Comments

    Adventures (1)

    I have never been a traditional teacher.  This year I removed most of the desks from my classroom and have added a standing table, coffee tables and areas for students to work away from a desk. This has been an amazing transformation with many benefits.  Last week the custodian was in my room and she asked, “What are your kids going to do next year when they have to sit in a desk?”  I smiled and said, “Not my problem.  I am supposed to teach them to the best of my ability and I am.&#

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  • Budget Crisis: Tips for the Overwhelmed Special Educator

    on Feb 3, 16 • in Educator Professionalism, Featured, Special Education • with Comments

    an ELL teacher goes from “Failure” to “Success” (1)

    How much is too much to expect from a special education teacher? Overwhelmed teachers across the country are reporting that the current budget crisis is impacting their ability to serve the students on their caseloads effectively. In many states, there is not set limit to the number of students a teacher may have on their caseload, so as the education budget gets downsized year after year, the solution in many school is to increase class sizes and caseloads for special education teachers. In 2013, a survey conducted by the Council for Exceptional Children showed that

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