Four Ways to Make Poetry Fun blog post cover showing children reading poetry in spring

Four Tips on How to Make Poetry Fun

April is National Poetry Month. It is a great time to get your students excited about poetry through reading and writing activities. In this blog post, I talk about four different ways to incorporate poetry into your lessons to help make poetry fun and exciting for students. 1. Read Alouds I love using poems as time fillers when you have a few minutes to kill before your next activity. They

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How To Use Escape Room Resources for Effective Review

Escape Room themed teaching resources are becoming a trend in education for a reason. They provide an engaging way for students to review a concept while collaborating with each other. In this blog, I share ideas for how to use both printable and digital escape rooms for engaging and effective skill review. When to Use Escape Room Resources Escape rooms are perfect for reviewing key concepts. Therefore, they should be

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image showing various math exit tickets for 2nd 3rd 4th and 5th grade

How to Use Math Exit Tickets Effectively

As a child, I always HATED math. I thought I was just not good at it. I remember the anxiety leading up to nearly every math test. I was so worried my teacher and my parents would finally know how clueless I was. They would chastise me for not asking for help sooner. The reality is this level of pressure and stress should not be on our students. Our job

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How to Make the Most of Mid-Year Assessments blog cover showing text and images of benchmark tests

How to Make the Most of Mid-Year Assessments

Most teachers administer large assessments at the beginning of the year for a baseline. Districts give standardized tests toward the end of the year to measure student progress. As a classroom teacher, I always felt that a mid-year assessment was the most important evaluation tool for checking my students’ progress. The mid-year benchmark assessment tells teachers what skills the students have mastered, and which ones still need to be taught

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cover for preparing for a substitute teacher showing sub in a classroom during covid 19

The Insider’s Guide to Preparing for a Substitute Teacher

Getting a good substitute teacher is hard. And getting a good sub to come back can be even more difficult – especially with the COVID-19 pandemic. But there are things you can do to increase the likelihood that your sub will be successful, which will make you, your students, and the sub happy. Best of all, the sub will want to come back next time you need one – which

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Guided Reading for Upper Elementary Blog Cover

How to Utilize Guided Reading in Upper Elementary

Most primary teachers know and utilize guided reading in their classrooms on a regular basis; however, in my experience, upper elementary teachers didn’t always see the value or find the time to implement this important practice into their own routines. Who can blame them? With standardized testing and demands from administration, it is hard to weed through the requirements to determine how to best use your time and resources to

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Guided reading blog cover showing a teacher and a boy with a blue shirt in a guided reading group

How To Get The Most out of Teaching Guided Reading

Teaching Guided Reading Guided reading: You either love it and teach it with fidelity, or you find it a waste of time. No matter what you think of it, the reality is guided reading time is incredibly valuable, and you should protect this chunk of time each day. Here are a few strategies that will help you get the most out of your guided reading instruction. What is Guided Reading

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Tips for Teaching Writing Workshop

You either love teaching writing or hate teaching writing. I know in my beginning years of teaching, I despised teaching writing. It was probably because I wasn’t confident about my writing skills. I was never actually taught how to write. We were expected to just write! Teachers would say, “write a story” or “write a report.” Sometimes we would have to practice responding to a prompt to practice before standardized

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Mentor Texts for Writing blog cover showing girl reading a book

The Best Mentor Text Books for Teaching Writing & Writer’s Workshop

Here is a list of my favorite books to use as mentor texts for teaching writing and writer’s workshop. I selected these texts based on my own experiences teaching writing in the classroom and to intentionally incorporate diversity. NOTE: The links below are Amazon affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Narrative Mentor Texts to Spark Ideas My Rotten Redheaded Older Brother by Patricia Polacco Topic

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How to use virtual field trips in your classroom blog post cover

How to Use Virtual Field Trips in Your Classroom

My virtual field trips have quickly become one of my most popular resources. It is no wonder teachers and students want fun and safe ways to learn virtually. Now you can take your students to Disney, see how chocolate is made, or even visit Mexico City for Day of the Dead. Using these resources in your classroom is a perfect way to engage students and have some fun. Here are

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