Thursday, April 29, 2010

Camping Alphabetical Order

A camping we will go... ! And your students can learn all of the terms associated with camping, and then put them into alphabetical order. Check back tomorrow for camping vocabulary flash cards and suggested games.

New Interactive Game of the Day Pick!

Join us as we pick a new interactive learning game each day, for some super fun, online games for K-8. Best part? Kids won't even know they're learning, and practice skills can be maintained all summer long!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Biography of Mom

Have your students write a biography all about Mom on Mother's Day. This handy worksheet will guide them through.

Sunday, April 25, 2010


Are teaching colleges too focused on theory, with not enough practice? That's the thought in Washington these days, and alternative programs for teacher training are competing for more effective methods. In the NYT article, Arthur Levine states, "Education schools are on the verge of losing their franchise." What do you think is needed to effectively train new teachers? Leave your comments (anonymously is fine).

Training the Best Teachers?

It's not always easy to know the most effective methods for teacher training, so this statistician decided to track data from different programs in Louisiana - and he found "pretty notable differences between different institutions." Click on the title above for the story.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Mother's Day Stationery

Delightful, printable stationery for very special Moms! Have your students write Mom a letter or a poem this Mother's Day.

Mother's Day Acrostic Poem Printable

Download and print out this Mother's Day project, where students can write an acrostic poem for Mom on a beautifully designed worksheet. Older students can create word boxes for the letters, coming up with all kinds of meaningful adjectives to describe Mom!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Kindergarten Sight Word Flash Cards

Visuals make these printable flash cards of high frequency kindergarten words really pop out. Click on the title above for the first page, with three more pages of flash cards available below.
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A recent BBC News article states that 1/4 of all Primary Students in Britain read only ONE BOOK in their classroom, during the whole school year. Further, one in eight students have not completed an entire book in class... Yikes!


Teachers and schools are held accountable for all kinds of results - it's stunning to consider the amount of responsibility educators are being held up to in American culture. But NCLB and Race to the Top initiatives have been embarrassingly controversial. Can teachers effect that much change? While so many factors are at play, these three writers argue in this Washington Post article, that different teachers get different results. They have the data to back up their arguments, and they include directed steps to change outcomes across the board.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Monday, April 12, 2010

Spring Break

How was your spring break? I was hoping for some relaxation, but found quite the opposite. We decided to tackle cleaning out our pond from years of algae wars - the algae was clearly winning - but in the process, we lost all of our beautiful koi. They were truly like pets to me, and I shall miss them -- Aphrodite, Paris, Sam, Ralph... all so beautiful. To end the holiday, I came down with a nasty cold virus. I hope your spring break was much more relaxing!

Should We Teach Financial Literacy?

Wouldn't it be nice if we all had the opportunity to learn about finances while still in high school? Why not? It's a huge part of our lives, but how versant are we, truly, when it comes to understanding monetary risk and reward, beyond balancing our checkbooks? This article examines the topic, but finds we are not doing very much to become financially savvy in our American classrooms. Do you teach money matters? Should teachers even be responsible for this huge topic?

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Student bullying, gossip, and dangers on the Web

Let's face it; there is some pretty scary stuff, still happening on the internet - maybe even more so now with social networking sites, and the fact that students have more unmonitored access. Recently at South Hadley High, a freshman committed suicide after online bullying. An entrepreneurial student at Wesleyan University runs a "tell all" site out of his dorm, that came to recent focus in TIME magazine. Bullying, popularity surveys, gossip - what are our students now exposed to, or even taking part in? In this article, Common Sense Media uses lessons to help students consider their online behavior. Does your school have any such lessons in place?

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Earth Day at School


I'm an unabashed supporter of Earth Day education, of finding ways - at school and at home - to reduce consumption of natural resources and to find all kinds of ways to recycle goods; my favorite recycling bin is the art bin. It doesn't take much to get started, to help your students become more consumption savvy. Find 10 ways here to start you off, and if you have any tips that you have put into practice in your own classroom and you'd like to promote, then we'd love to share them; please add them!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Race to the Top: Fair to All States?

I certainly have some reservations about the "Race to the Top" contest, where only two states have been awarded federal funds. The terms, and the awards, seem rather skewed to me. What happens to states who lose out, but still need federal funding?