Category Archives for Strategies

Brain Blast: Reduce Classroom Commotion

Causes of Classroom Management ProblemsReduce Classroom CommotionWork is too Hard or EasyIf work is too hard, kids resist. If it’s too easy, they become lethargic and crabby.Moving into GroupsWhen transitioning from independent work to group-work. Students should know which direction they should move, how fast, whether they are trading seats or moving their own chairs, […]

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7 Reader Response Journal Prompts

Here are 7 reader response journal activities that work for either narratives or expository texts. “Reader response is a school of literary criticism that ignores both the author and the text’s contents, confining analysis to the reader’s experience when reading a particular work,” according to Chegg.com. Wolfgan Iser’s explanation is deeper: “This is how it […]

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Index Card Journal Options: Structured Reflection or Sketchnote

I like to give my college education majors options for how they reflect. Such is the case of the Index Card Journal assignment–which can be turned in as structured reflection or sketchnote.The post also provides models and rubrics.​ Also, feel free to copy and modify the handout for your own purposes.Insta-ResponseHere’s how I am setting up my responses […]

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BRAIN BLAST: SUMMARIZERS

Every Wednesday, I release a strategy poster or “Brain Blast” – a departure from the longer Monday blog posts. These are instructional snacks, designed to be consumed by time-pressed teachers in 9 seconds or less. Weekly Teaching Strategies Based on Neuroscience. (Almost) Better than Tacos! I’m In lorem ipsum dolor

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Family Reading Meeting

A while back, a mail carrier with “Thomas Jackson” on his uniform dropped off a package at my office. I see him regularly because I often one-click order presents for myself on Amazon (what I call a celebration of Todd, my wife calls a problem). On this occasion, Mr. Jackson noticed “English Education” on my door and asked if I had a moment […]

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Encouraging the Impulse to Annotate

Annotating has remained unidirectional—someone comments on a text —ever since novelists and scholars wrote prose to accompany Paradise Lost and didactic Greek verse.However, annotation does not adequately signify the complexity, creativity, and multiplicity of communication that have resulted from the Web 2.0 renaissance of (mostly) free social media tools–tools that make it easy and exhilarating to mashup, […]

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Your Principal Scores Your Teaching as “Developing”: How to Get Up Off the Mat

It’s a nightmare. After observing your third period, the school principal marked two elements of your instruction as developing. You try to apply growth mindset to the situation: “I’ll dig in and improve through sheer effort.” You try to re-center your emotions with braggadocio: “King Kong ain’t got nothin’ on me!” You go hyperbolic about relying more on student […]

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