Top Teaching > Angela Bunyi

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Finding Literacy Inspiration: Why It's Okay to Be Addicted to Pinterest

AnchorchartForty-one tabs. Seriously, I had 41 tabs open on my laptop at once. Forty-one glorious gems that I just could not close, many of them printable resources ready to be utilized immediately. Time spent finding these resources? Probably thirty minutes. Tops.

Anyone who has ever touched Pinterest can attest that it's highly addictive. However, I have found the time I spend on the site to be extremely beneficial. If you haven't heard of this resource yet, you are totally missing out. Forget Googling, and learn how you can peruse the Internet, find incredible educational resources, and share them with your friends in a visually appealing way. 

Read this post to learn about some of the quick and easy literacy ideas I've found through Pinterest. I'll also spotlight a few archived posts on literacy, where you'll find many videos and printables.

Photo: Visit The Inspired Apple (tab #32) for some gorgeous anchor chart and lesson ideas.

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Comments: 25

Evidence-Based Small Group Literacy Instruction: Measuring Progress and Growth

It feels great to be back! This is my fourth year writing with Scholastic, and with each year I have written through the lens of a different grade level. My posts have detailed my time as a fourth grade teacher when I freshly transitioned from being a literacy coach, a third grade teacher, which followed my time teaching fifth grade, and now my current role of academic/literacy interventionist for a K-6 school. In this role, I am responsible for small group literacy instruction for select students in kindergarten through 6th grade. With the great responsibility of meeting individual student needs, and quality small group planning and instruction, there is little down time. With up to four small groups per grade level each day, it is possible that I need to create up to 28 lesson plans a day. How does one know what to plan? More importantly, how does one know what is successful? I am finding it critical to utilize evidence-based literacy instruction and assessment to guide instruction, and I'd like to share some tips on making the most of your time with small group work in your classroom. In this post I have included some printable resources and hands-on materials for literacy instruction as well.

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Comments: 14

Greetings From Top Teaching Advisor Angela


Greetings from Tennessee! My name is Angela Bunyi (like Daniel Boone-yee) and this is my 12th year of teaching. Follow me on Top Teaching where you'll find class set-up videos, my classroom and projects in photos, and ideas and resources to use right away.

I grew up in the Los Angeles area, but I'm happy to be living and teaching in a beautiful suburban community outside of Nashville, now. I'm currently the academic/literacy interventionist at Discovery School at Reeves Rogers in Murfreesboro, a school for the gifted/talented and high achieving.

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Comments: 7

Your Kids Can Do It: Quick, Free, and Easy Stop-Motion Videos

Stop_legoToday is not only my last day of teaching, but also my last day posting on Top Teaching for this school year. For my last post, I would like to share a fun classroom activity. As our year wrapped up, my students took some time to become more familiar with stop-motion animation. Using a free program, we were able to create stop-motion videos from start to finish in fewer than thirty minutes — and jazzed-up versions in less than an hour. With videos featuring Mother's Day messages, Harry Potter in LEGOs, and a demonstration of a llama's digestive system, this post will help wrap up the year in a fun and engaging manner. 

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Host a Reality Fair

Your school probably hosts a Career Day each year, but what about a Reality Fair? If you haven't heard of this before, it's a wonderful addition for grades 5 and above. I have never seen any other event hit home like this does with regard to selecting a profession and trying to work with a budget. Read on to see how our fantastic school counselor organized and created our Reality Fair to give our students a taste of reality. This could be a wonderful addition to your scheduled school events next year.

Photo: Students meet with a university advisor about college costs and entrance requirements.

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Comments: 23

Effective Classroom Management: Drop the Tokens, Stickers, Stars, and Prizes

KohnWith the year winding down, your thoughts may already be moving forward to changes you'd like to make next year. What worked? What didn't? If you struggled with classroom management, you might be considering a new management system that involves extrinsic rewards — to start the year off on the right foot, you hope. If that is the case, I urge you to reflect on the role of extrinsic rewards in your classroom. In this post, I am including portions of two previous posts on extrinsic rewards, which I hope will help you decide what will work in YOUR classroom. 


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Comments: 14

The Power of a Student-Made Magazine

Magazine_mixThis week we begin the publication cycle for our class memoirs. It's always a delight to see the finished products, and students love to receive a copy of their writing, published along with that of their peers. I enjoy using resources such as Studentreasures for publication, but there are other great resources that can take the look of your students' writing to a whole new level. In this post I'll share some of these resources — and the power of creating high-quality classroom magazines — with you. 

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Comments: 14

The Power of Positive Influences in Your Life (In and Out of the Classroom)

Scholastic_postWhen I taught 3rd grade last year I was fortunate to have Lindsey Gagnon as one of my parents. I don't think I have ever — let me stress, ever — met anyone kinder and more caring in my entire life. She was the kind of parent that offered to bring me food at home when I called in sick; the kind of parent that offered her car when my precious Beetle broke down. She probably doesn't know this, but she continues to be an inspiration to me.

I love meeting and being surrounded by people like Mrs. Gagnon. They are such positive forces, and it reminds me that kindness begets kindness. What or who keeps you going each week? What makes you want to be a better person and teacher? This post is dedicated to the people, forces, and even mindsets that can help you and those around you shine.

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Comments: 10

Striving and Thriving Through Autism

Lord_cynthia_vp_xlgApril is Autism Awareness Month, and I, like many other teachers, have a student with autism/Asperger's in my classroom. This week I would like to introduce you to a guest writer from my school, Kristy Mall, who teaches autistic children and has an autistic son. My hope is that she will help you better understand how to work with this growing population. 

Photo: From this post, you can link to a video interview with Cynthia Lord, author of Rules, which deals with autism. 

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Comments: 8

Gifted and Talented Students — Don't Let Them Fall Short of Their Potential!

Gifted  Because of NCLB and initiatives like First to the Top, there is a heavy focus on raising standardized test scores. And with this focus, much of our funds, energy, and time are directed at our lowest performing students, often ELL and low socioeconomic students. So, what happens to our very brightest students, the ones with the most potential? Or, to put it a better way, what would our very brightest students look like if they became the primary focus? With one in five high school dropouts testing in the gifted range, and only two cents of every 100 federal education dollars aimed at the gifted, I can't help but worry that we are leaving out an entire population. The truth is, we often deny students the opportunity to reach their full potential. Read on to see how you can help make a change.

Image: Did you know that gifted programming and funding is not mandated in many states? How does your state rank on gifted rights and opportunities? Find out with the interactive version of the map above at Copyright © 2011 Davidson Institute for Talent Development.

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