Category: Student Engagement

Student Teams: Collaboration That Makes A Difference

By Dr. Jane Bartley For 50 years, experts, policy wonks, and education reformers have offered countless interventions, reinventions, and suggestions to improve schooling in America. From scrapping the system to charter schools and privatization of the educational systems in the United States, some of the very best minds have analyzed

Amy Dujon

What Is Truly On Your Plate: Transformative Principal Interview With Amy Dujon

We’re all familiar with the old script. The teacher stands at the front of the classroom lecturing, the students take notes, and then there’s an assignment. Unfortunately, that script can’t prepare today’s learners for success in college and the global workplace. As Principal of a Florida elementary school, LSI Practice

Did They Forget Everything? When Students Return From Vacation

By Jennifer Cleary, co-author of Classroom Techniques for Creating Conditions for Rigorous Instruction We’ve all seen, chuckled at, and likely shared memes and other social media posts describing how educators experience the holiday season. “Stay strong!” “Brace yourselves.” “December lesson plans: scrape students off the ceiling.” They are quite amusing, but many

6 Classroom Activities to Help Students Express Gratitude

Thanksgiving might be the best holiday to harvest for learning opportunities (no pun intended), but many teachers default to having the students draw turkeys using their hands or making pilgrim hats out of construction paper. That’s a waste. The theme of Thanksgiving is, of course, gratitude. That falls clearly within

Is Technology Shortening Students’ Attention Spans?

The answer might surprise you. According to Dr. David A. Sousa, educational neuroscience consultant and award-winning author of Engaging the Rewired Brain, the answer is no… with a big qualifier. No, technology doesn’t shorten students’ attention spans. Today’s learners are capable of focusing on one thing for just as long

Image courtesy of Des Moines Public Schools: https://www.flickr.com/photos/dmps/36962770821/in/album-72157686316235914/

Success Criteria: A Five-Star Recipe for Students

By Kara Bentley Teachers, when your students walk into your classroom… Do they know what they’re going to be learning? Do they know what they NEED to know to demonstrate understanding of content? Are they prepared to autonomously apply their knowledge to successfully complete a task? Do they have exemplars

To Exist or Not Exist? How Student Autonomy Changes the Classroom: Part 2

By Kristin DeJong Last time around, we introduced you to the idea of implementing a few new strategies to lighten your teaching load and promote more student-centered learning in the process. Today, we round out that list with a few more ideas you’ll be doing in no time. Establish Team Roles

To Exist or Not Exist? How Student Autonomy Changes the Classroom: Part 1

By Kristin DeJong The greatest sign of success for a teacher is to be able to say, “The children are now working as if I did not exist.” As a new school year begins, I’m reminded of this quotation from the famed physician and educator, Maria Montessori, and I often

7 Ways to Help ELL Students Overcome Language Barriers

About five million children in the United States—that’s approximately one out of 10 students–are learning how to speak English. This is a huge demographic shift, not only in states like California, Texas, and Florida, but also in Massachusetts, North Dakota, and Vermont. Many of the students come from migrant backgrounds,

Hey, Teachers! Take the Training Wheels Off

By Kara Bentley To develop into independent thinkers, students need to become autonomous in the classroom. While this doesn’t mean they always need to work independently, it does mean that they need to own their learning; deepen their understanding of instruction, and use provided resources to apply their knowledge to