Top Teaching > 49 posts categorized "Classroom Management"

Getting the Wiggles Out and Catching Students’ Attention

IMG_1362Picture this: You get all of your students to the rainbow rug for a fun and exciting story. As you look out, anxious to begin, you are greeted by a sea of movement. . . . Mason is lying down on the rug. Maya is playing with her dress. Mike and Chris are play-fighting. Miguel is rolling his head in circles and pulling on Carson’s shirt. You say to yourself, “These kids just can’t sit still!” 

The beginning of the school year can be a very wiggly time, especially in preschool and early childhood classrooms. How do you catch and keep students’ attention while allowing for the wiggle time they need? Click "read more" to find a few ideas for getting the wiggles out and helping students focus.

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Getting the Class Back on Track

Vasicek_shutterstock_62662183_crazedwomanThe beginning of the year was hectic, and the procedures you tried to put in place didn't really stick. Looking back, there are definitely things you would have done differently. Plus, as the novelty of a new school year wears off, some students are really testing the limits. You realize your class is off track and you want to fix it before it completely derails. What do you do? Try these strategies to get your class back on track.

Photo ©: iStockphoto.

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Comments: 1

Rethinking Motivation for the 2011–2012 School Year — Thanks Daniel Pink! Part Two

Class“Problems cannot be solved by the same level of thinking that created them.

             —Albert Einstein

Welcome back for the second part of my two-part series on motivating students this school year and beyond. The picture to the right shows my homeroom students the first week of school. I am amazed by the expressions of determination on their faces every time I look at this photograph. In fact, I had the picture enlarged to a four-foot by three-foot poster and hung it outside our classroom door as a reminder that curiosity and excitement about learning do exist, even at this age. And without vigilance and the willingness to grant them autonomy, this flame can be extinguished in an instant.

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Comments: 2

You Have How Many Students? Making Larger Class Sizes and Less Instructional Time Work

IMG_1284Gone are the days of 20 or fewer students in a class. Good-bye to 180 days in a school year. With our current economic crisis, districts all around the country are being forced to make disastrous cuts in order to balance their budgets. Most states and districts have increased class sizes and many have also deducted days from the school year.

Even as this trend continues, we have to be sure that the education we give our students never declines in quality. So the big question becomes, “How do I use my time more efficiently and effectively in order to reach all my learners?”

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Comments: 5

Organization: Why YOU Will Have More Time This Year

Vasicek Organized CounterFrom homework collection and vocabulary words to emails and parent communication, you are probably realizing that you could use a little help with organization as the school year gets going. Read on for some ways that I set myself up for a successful school year.

 

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Comments: 2

Greetings From Top Teaching Advisor Ruth

Manna_Ruth_Promo_xlg I’m always excited as a new school year approaches. It’s the time of year when all the pencils are sharp and none of the crayons are broken and I’m filled with a sense of hope and possibility. It’s an annual “do-over.”

I’ve been an elementary teacher for 25 years in New Jersey, Illinois, and Massachusetts. During that time I’ve taught many diverse students in urban, suburban, and rural schools.

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Greetings From Top Teaching Advisor Jeremy

Brunaccioni_Jeremy_p_xlg Hello! Jeremy Brunaccioni here, writing from my kindergarten classroom in Massachusetts. I received my B.A. in Art History from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst while working as a member of the education staff for the Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association in Historic Deerfield. After a few years of teaching in museums, I returned to UMASS for a M.A. in Early Childhood Education. Since then, I've been happily teaching early childhood students, from kindergarten to 3rd grade.

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Comments: 14

Greetings From Top Teaching Advisor Angela

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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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Greetings From Top Teaching Advisor Andrea

Spillett_Andrea_p_xlg I am thrilled to be back blogging for Scholastic. For those of you who have followed my blog regarding kindergarten ideas and English Language Development strategies, I now have the privilege to share ideas targeted for 1st and 2nd graders about a topic that is near and dear to all of our hearts: literacy. Teaching students how to read and write is incredibly rewarding. There are so many aspects of teaching that I find inspiring, but when a child reads for the first time, now that is monumental. In the past you might have known me as Andrea Spillett. I have since married and will be blogging under my new name, Andrea Maurer. I look forward to collaborating, troubleshooting, and yes, at times commiserating about the trials and tribulations of our wonderful profession.

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Greetings From Top Teaching Advisor Megan

Power_Megan_Promo_xlg Greetings from sunny San Diego, California! My name is Megan Power and this is my 10th year of teaching. In my career I have taught kindergarten through 2nd grade and I am currently in my fourth year of teaching full-day kindergarten at Del Sur Elementary in the Poway Unified School District. I am thrilled to be back on Scholastic.com blogging about early childhood education this year after a successful year blogging about technology integration in 2010-2011, and as the PreK and Kindergarten teacher advisor in 2009-2010.

 

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Comments: 3

Greetings From Top Teaching Advisor Brent

Brent_Vasicek Where does the excitement of a sea voyage meet rigorous academic standards? Right here in Pier 24 at Miami Elementary in Clinton Township, Michigan. My name is Brent, and each year I pick a theme for the class. This year it is exploration. From the bon voyage to the final docking, I am excited to share management and organization tips for the yearlong journey.

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Comments: 63

Planning a Productive Summer for You and Your Students

IMG_4263 As a teacher, I am fully aware of the summer reading decline that affects so many students. In his article "Bridging the Summer Reading Gap," Richard Allington states, "Regardless of other activities, the best predictor of summer loss or summer gain is whether or not a child reads during the summer." In this post I will share the ways I encourage my students to reflect on the year's reading achievements and then to use their reflections as motivation to continue reading over the summer.   

But this post is not just about students. Teachers need motivation too!  Every year there are things that I want to change in my classroom or ways that I want to alter my curriculum. The summer is the perfect time to reenergize and make concrete plans for next year. In this post I will offer specific tips and suggestions for making this your most productive summer yet! 

 

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Comments: 1

Saying Goodbye

BusWaveBye2TH[1] Over the years I’ve noticed that things tend to fall apart, socially speaking, at the end of the school year. Maybe you’ve noticed this phenomenon, too. This social disintegration is marked by short tempers, unkind words, and increased sensitivity and rejection. Rejection is one way students separate from and prepare to leave their classmates. We’re all exhausted and ready for a break, but it’s up to us to ensure that all students feel safe and accepted through the last day of school.

Here are several suggestions for helping students transition peacefully to summer vacation and to their next grade.

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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

Planning for Next Year — Hogwarts' Houses

Hogwarts%202[1] Right now we’re immersed in state tests that will run through the end of May, leaving just enough time for field days, class plays, and an all-school meeting before students board their buses for the last time. Many of us are thinking ahead to next year as we discuss class lists, consider groupings, and receive room assignments. Some of us will move to a new grade or school.

So now seems like an ideal time to share an idea about setting up small groups for next year. Keep reading to find out more. . . .

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Comments: 2

Putting the "WOW" in your Open House: 10 Technology Tips

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The end of the year is rapidly approaching. As teachers face state tests, finish up learning units, and try to push their students to that next level, Open House is lurking right around the corner. Click to read ten technology tips that will show off your students’ learning and wow parents at your Open House.

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Behind the Scenes, Part 5 — Editing and Publishing Your Movie

IMG_0739“Edit and revise.” Do these words make your students cringe during writing time? Giving your students the opportunity to edit a movie is an exciting and relevant way to teach students the importance of these writing steps. Read on to see how even kindergartners can edit their movie and translate this important understanding to their writing.

 

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Behind the Scenes, Part 4 — Filming Your Movie

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Lights, Camera, ACTION! You’re ready to start filming! This is an exciting time, especially for the students, but there is still a lot of important learning and planning at this stage. Read more and find out how you can prepare your students to film your class movie in a smooth and successful way.

 

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Comments: 10

Working Together and Using Technology to Understand What Is Happening in Japan

JapanbeforeandafterDevastating videos, images, and stories are coming out of Japan. Educators are looking for just the right way to teach students about the earthquake and tsunami as well as the growing concerns about the nuclear reactors. We know that covering current events through activities that incorporate listening, speaking, reading, and writing can increase literacy skills in the classroom. But how do we use online resources to tackle difficult topics with sensitivity and heart?

This week I'll share my experiences working with a 3rd grade class to study the events in Japan. Check out images from my flipchart, click on links to online resources, and download activity sheets that will have your students collaborating in groups and using technology to understand the effects of the earthquake and tsunami on the people in Japan.

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Comments: 9

Classroom Walkthroughs

2003510191[1] This year as a new curriculum director I’ve visited more classrooms and observed more teaching than I’ve observed in my entire career! Having been an elementary teacher for more than 20 years, I’m at home in classrooms. Five-minute walkthroughs give me surprisingly accurate snapshots of what’s happening in individual classrooms as well as entire schools.

If your principal conducts regular walkthroughs, you're familiar with this observation model. You already know that frequent, short visits enhance your development as a teacher and learner. And walkthroughs are more manageable than longer, formal observations for teachers, administrators, and coaches.

Whether you’re familiar with walkthroughs or not, keep reading to learn what I (and your principal) might note during a walkthrough.

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Comments: 4

Getting Ready for Testing Season

Black-boy-writing[1] Good teaching every day, with engaging, standards-based lessons and thought-provoking questions, makes students good test takers. Setting high expectations, demanding quality work, and consistently enforcing rules contribute to positive test results. A calm, well-organized classroom in which you and your students are fully engaged in learning leads to success on tests. Students who value practice and hard work take tests in stride.

Later this month Massachusetts 3rd through 10th graders will begin taking standardized tests, which will stretch from March through May. Read on to find ideas to help you get ready for testing season. 

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Comments: 14

Engaging Student Writers With Blogging

IMG_0374Which is more motivating to you? Just writing for your teacher? Or, writing for readers all around the world? Which piece of writing would you spend more time and energy on? More than likely, your students feel the same.

Tap into students’ digital world by bringing blogging into your classroom. Read on to get examples of how seamlessly blogging can be integrated into your curriculum. Also, find out how adding a worldwide audience automatically increases students’ engagement in their writing.

 

Award graphic courtesy of adrianbruce.com.

 

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Comments: 5

Shifting Teachers' Thinking — Focusing on Learning First

IMG_0406Imagine a school with children who can read and write, but with teachers who cannot, and you have a metaphor of the Information Age in which we live.

—Peter Cochrane

How do you predict the future? People have been trying to do this since the beginning of recorded history. As educators, we are trying to prepare our students for their future  a future that is unknown. It is time for us as educators to shift our thinking and teaching from the way of the past to the way of the present, in order to prepare our students for the way of the future.

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Comments: 3

Learning and the Brain

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This weekend I attended the Learning and the Brain Conference in Cambridge, MA, a three day conference that brings together neuroscientists, psychologists, and educators to explore the intersection of the mind (psychology), the brain (neuroscience), and the teaching-learning process. As teachers, we can use the results of the latest brain research and integrate information from neuroscience and psychology into our teaching practice.

Read on to discover just a little of what I learned at one presentation.

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Comments: 16

Higher Order Comprehension: The Power of Socratic Seminar

IMG_2044 I was in my room when my assistant principal’s voice came over the intercom: “It’s time for us to schedule an observation.” I groaned. I had just been diagnosed with bronchitis and a bad ear infection, and my voice was barely hanging on. What was I to do? A Socratic Seminar saved the day!

Don't know what this is? A Socratic Seminar allows students to shine while deeply increasing comprehension. Do not miss this post. Learning about this methodology changed my perspective on teaching and also allowed me to secure a highly successful observation. Several videos, support tools, and a detailed lesson plan are included.

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Comments: 8

Teaching Writing — Choosing Topics

Boy writing (2)

This week I visited a classroom in a rural school up near the Vermont-Massachusetts border. While I was there, I struck up a conversation with an 8-year-old boy, Tommy (not his real name), about his writing. He started out by showing me a poem he was working on about the wind. The subject, the wind, and the way he had written the poem didn’t sound like an 8-year-old boy. But hidden in the poem was a gold nugget, the word coyote.

 

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Comments: 12

Are Your Students Working Hard? Time for a "Break" Dance!

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I love my class. I really, really love my class. They work hard, they stay in the struggle, and they have slowly learned to accept my favorite mantra: "There are no shortcuts." With that being said, hard workers also need to have a little break now and then. A break of two minutes and 45 seconds, to be exact. This post will share two practical methods I use in my room to create even harder working — and happier — kids. I love my job. This post demonstrates a few of the reasons why.

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Comments: 25

Getting Organized for Academic Success: Tackling the Paperwork Trail

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Think about the positive and negative components of teaching. Working with students and having an impact on their lives probably ranks highest on the positive list for most. A large majority, I suspect, would rank keeping up with papers as the top negative aspect. With stacks of paperwork to correct, reams of forms to pass out, and files to complete and return, how does one balance the positive and negative components of teaching? In this post I will share the eight tips that allowed me to tackle the paperwork trail and organize myself and my students for academic success.  

Note: This post uses photographs to demonstrate how you can organize your incoming and outgoing paperwork. 

 

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Comments: 4

Lockdown Drills Sometimes Aren’t Drills- Kelly Elementary School Shooting

DSC03415 Kindergarten students practicing a lockdown drill- Quietly sitting away from any windows and doors.

 
“Knowing how to respond quickly and efficiently in a crisis is critical to ensuring the safety of our schools and students. The midst of a crisis is not the time to start figuring out who ought to do what. At that moment, everyone involved — from top to bottom — should know the drill and know each other.”

—Margaret Spellings

 

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More About Movement, Exercise, and Learning

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Your comments last week made me think more about movement, exercise, and learning. This week I’ve added additional movement strategies I've tried with my students. Activities designed for students who have a high need for movement also benefit their more typical peers, so the whole class participated in these activities.

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Comments: 3

Scholastic.com Spotlight: Book Leveling Party With Teacher Book Wizard

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Do you wish there was an easy way to level your classroom library and/or assist students in choosing appropriate leveled books that will interest them? Well, your wish has been granted by the Book Wizard: Scholastic's Teacher Book Wizard, that is! Click Read More to see this amazing FREE tool in action and to learn how you can host a book leveling party. This post also includes links to video tours of my kindergarten classroom library and my colleague Beth Newingham's amazing 3rd grade classroom library. Happy leveling!

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Comments: 9

Wake Up Brains With Exercise!

Students exercising

At a time when schools are canceling recess for more reading and math instruction, the best test prep may be exercise. Getting students up out of their seats wakes up and enlarges their brains!

Recently I’ve visited classrooms in which students have excellent self-control. They sit up straight in their chairs and work quietly, but their lack of movement is noticeable and worrying.

As teachers there are times during the school day when we can and should promote movement.

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Technology Roll Call Survey Results Are In!


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The results are in with 80 responses!

Thank you for taking a few minutes to complete my Technology Roll Call Survey and give me a little insight into my readers’ access to technology and their professional development needs. I have enjoyed seeing all the technology teachers have, along with the interest in getting more technology and using it more effectively. Always remember that having the technology tools is great, but it is the teacher and the purpose behind the tools that make them effective instructional pieces. Click Read More to see some of the results from the survey and get a glimpse into some upcoming blog topics. BONUS: A GREAT FREE graphing Web site is displayed and shared in this post!

 

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Comments: 2

Preparing for Parent Conferences

Parent teacher conference 

The following approach to structuring parent conferences has been effective for me. I meet with parents for 30 minute conferences twice each school year.

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Comments: 12

Parent, Teacher, Student Communication — Going Beyond Paper Newsletters and Emails

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Clear communication is one of the keys to success in school and in life. As the technology in our parents’ and students’ hands change, so should the way we communicate with them and keep them informed and involved in their education. Several years ago I happily shed the paper newsletters that I dreaded writing and wondered who read. I have also recently gone away from the mass emails informing and updating parents of the weekly happenings. Since evolving my communication methods and embracing the world they live in, I feel my students and parents are more informed than ever. Click READ MORE to learn about some useful parent and student communication tools to try in your classroom. You might be surprised to discover that you and your students are already using many of them outside the classroom!

 

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Comments: 53

My September Top Ten List: Back to School We Go!

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I am so excited to be blogging for Scholastic again this school year!  While I will continue to share my ideas with all of you, my role will be a bit different this year. I will be creating a "Top 10" list at the beginning of each month for my readers to enjoy.  It will include timely lesson ideas, instructional videos, technology tips, management tools, links to cool Web sites, and, of course, a window into my own classroom so that you can see what I am doing with my students each month. 

READ ON to check out my first "Top 10" list of the year and discover the things I am most excited about this month. Printables and links to useful Web sites are included.


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Comments: 7

Ready Responses for Class Discussions

Kids raising hands

A teacher recently asked how to include all students in class discussions.

One thing teachers can do to eliminate the deer caught in headlights phenomenon is offer students three ready responses. Responding verbally is preparation for the adult world in which it’s not okay to sit and stare when asked to contribute. Instead, they can say:

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Comments: 12

Setting Up for a Year of Literacy

Behaviorchart As the summer days are coming to an end, I'm looking forward to the change of season and the fresh start of a new school year. Here in New York City, teachers are officially returning to their classrooms today. Whether today's your first day back or you've been knee deep in lesson planning for weeks, you know that an effective behavior management plan, along with a few key resources, will get your students ready for a busy year filled with literacy.

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Comments: 2

Back-to-School Routines

Book cover

Welcome to Scholastic’s Teacher Helpline! Some of you have already started school and the rest will be starting soon. In September I receive questions about classroom routines. It may seem obvious, but we need to explicitly teach the routines we expect students to follow.

As we teach and practice routines consistently, students grow into our high expectations. The time we spend now establishing routines is time well spent. Later on students will feel secure knowing what to do and we’ll have more time to teach. Following are three routines I teach my students.

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Comments: 85

Math Workshop: Using Developmental Grouping to Differentiate Your Instruction

JacobIn the past, I taught my math lessons as an entirely "whole-class" event.  I found myself at the front of the classroom teaching while my students sat at their desks trying to understand the new concepts.  There were always some students who found the lesson too easy and, likely out of boredom, tried to do the work before I even finished teaching the lesson.  On the other hand, there were also those students who struggled to understand the concepts and felt lost unless I stopped teaching and went to their individual desks to help them.  For these reasons, I found that teaching math was frustrating.  I was never able to meet the needs of all of my students.  That is when my teaching partner suggested we do Math Workshop after attending Alice Murphy's professional development seminar.  I have no idea why I had not been doing this all along!  I am so passionate about Reading and Writing Workshops because I can provide my students with the differentiated instruction that is so important in elementary school.  Math Workshop now allows me to do the same thing, as I use developmental grouping to differentiate my daily instruction. 

READ ON to learn how I use developmental grouping, math rotation stations, and math games to meet to the needs of my students during Math Workshop.

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Comments: 10

Host an International Festival at Your School!

Main As I look at my students each year, I see such a variety of faces looking back at me.  This is because Troy, the city in which my school is located, is the second most ethnically diverse city in the state of Michigan.  I feel very proud to be a Troy teacher, and I believe that it is so important to celebrate the diversity that exists in my classroom and at my school.  Teaching my students to embrace their diversity helps create an atmosphere of respect and appreciation in my classroom.  One way that the other third grade teachers and I do this at our school is by hosting an International Festival each year.  During this time students research the countries of their ancestors and present their research at an International Festival to celebrate their different cultures through authentic costumes, patriotic music, and international cuisine.


READ ON to learn more about the research conducted by the students, the International Festival music performance, the exciting fashion show, and the International Taste-Fest.  A VIDEO also accompanies this post!  

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Comments: 34

Have Your Students Filled a Bucket Today?

RijaWhile I work hard to ensure that I am providing my students with the best academic instruction on a daily basis, I also take time to teach the students in my classroom to be good citizens who care for and respect each other. While the teaching of these "life skills" should certainly not fall solely on the shoulders of us teachers, I do believe it is important to help build good character in our students. Teachers can help students value themselves and each other when we encourage them to be helpful, compassionate, unselfish classmates. In my classroom, my teaching partner and I call these positive students "bucket fillers." As the Bucket Fillers Web site explains, "'Bucket fillers' are those who help without being asked, give hugs and compliments, and generally spread their love and good feelings to others." Bucket filling is a common act in our classroom and one that does not go unrecognized!

READ ON to learn how we teach and encourage bucket filling in our classroom, see PHOTOS of our bucket-filler chart, and download a PRINTABLE that you can use to promote bucket filling in your own classroom.

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Comments: 41

My Classroom Economy: Bringing the "Real World" Into the Classroom

Customer While economics is considered part of the elementary social studies curriculum, textbooks and other social studies programs often neglect to incorporate economic instruction. The classroom economy can fill this void while serving as a fun way for students to act as both consumers and economists in a real world setting.  A well-run classroom economy has the ability to teach students economic principles while also serving as a behavior management system in which students are essentially responsible for themselves.

READ ON to learn about how I set up my classroom economy, watch a VIDEO of what it looks like in my classroom, and download tons of PRINTABLES that you can use to implement a classroom economy of your own!

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Comments: 61

Assessment in My Reading Workshop

Lead Many teachers are excited to implement a Reading Workshop in their classroom.  And why not?  It is a framework for teaching reading that allows students to read self-selected texts at their own level, and it provides us teachers with many opportunities to differentiate our teaching to meet the wide variety of readers we often find in our classrooms.  However, when we give up the traditional methods of teaching reading, there can initially be a concern when it comes to assessment.  The basal texts and other prepackaged reading programs come complete with end-of-the-story comprehension questions for each selection, fill-in-the blank vocabulary worksheets to match the "one size fits all" stories, and specific questions to ask students as they are reading the stories.  We know that these methods of assessment are not accurate indicators of true reading performance, nor do they help teachers guide their instruction to meet the specific needs of individual readers in their classroom.  So you are probably asking, how can I implement a Reading Workshop and also assess my readers in an effective, efficient, and, most importantly, informative way?


Read on to find out how I use both formal and informal means of assessment to regularly evaluate my readers and inform my own teaching.

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Comments: 92

Reading Workshop: What It Looks Like in My Classroom

P1000945Richard Allington believes that effective elementary literacy instruction incorporates six common features.  He labels them as the Six Ts.

They are time, texts, teaching, talk, tasks, and testing

His many studies make it clear that students need lots of time to read. It's also important that the time spent reading is done in texts that are "just right" for the students. Explicit teaching of reading strategies and skills followed by meaningful tasks are at the heart of what he believes readers need. He also emphasizes the importance of providing time for readers to engage in authentic talk about their books. Finally, he believes testing should not be used to define students but rather to guide a teacher's instruction so that she can help her readers grow. 

I believe wholeheartedly in the philosophy of reading workshop because, if executed effectively, it allows teachers to seamlessly incorporate these Six Ts into their reading instruction on a daily basis. While it has taken me years to feel entirely comfortable with this reading workshop, I can't imagine another way of teaching reading that would as effectively meet the needs of my readers.


Read on to view a VIDEO of a typical day of reading workshop in our classroom, find tips for workshop management, get new ideas for assigning and managing independent reading tasks, and check out links to reading workshop printables.

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Comments: 121

A Virtual Peek Into My Classroom Library

Choosing books A library is an essential part of any elementary classroom. To run an effective Reading Workshop, it is necessary to stock your classroom library with books of a variety of genres, topics, and levels. Teachers who use the workshop method know that readers need lots of books in a single year, as they are given time to read self-selected texts independently on a daily basis. For this reason, it's important to organize your classroom library in a way that allows students to easily find "just right" books that they are interested in reading.


Read on to watch a video about how I organize my classroom library and how I use it as a tool to help my students evaluate their own reading progress throughout the year.  You will also find ideas for collecting more books for your own classroom library, links to download book labels, and additional photos of the library.

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Comments: 4

New Resource Center

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Editor's Announcement:

Hi, Teaching Matters Reader,

It gives me great pleasure to announce the opening of the brand new Teaching Matters Resource Center featuring Angela Bunyi and Beth Newingham. 

This is the place to find everything you're looking for from these star teachers including: videos, photos, printables, book recommendations, themes, lesson plans, and more.

Take a look and tell us what you think. And check back! We'll be adding much more to this great new area. 

--Amy
Scholastic Editor 

Comments: 58

Take a Virtual Tour of My Classroom!

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There are times when I feel more like an interior designer than a teacher.  I'm sure there are many of you who can relate to this same feeling at the beginning of the school year. I spend a great deal of time obsessing over the layout of my classroom so that it complements my teaching style and also creates an environment that supports learning. I work hard to arrange my furniture in a way that leaves lots of places for students to gather. I also strive to make my classroom one that is cozy, interesting, and interactive all at the same time.  After many tweaks and even extreme makeovers, my classroom finally feels like my "home away from home."

Read on to view a virtual tour of my classroom, see additional pictures of classroom displays, and find downloads of useful posters and tools I use in my classroom.

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Comments: 39

Meet Angela Bunyi

Two_chairs_backGreetings from Tennessee! My name is Angela Bunyi (like Daniel Boone-yee) and this is my 10th year of teaching. 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 a 3rd grade teacher at Discovery School at Reeves Rogers in Murfreesboro, a school for the gifted/talented and high achieving. This is a change since my time serving as Scholastic’s Grades 35 Teacher Advisor in 20082009, but I am excited to venture out into this rewarding, challenging territory.

And speaking of my school move, I’m not afraid of change. I’m always up for a new challenge or adventure, and this has led me to some amazing opportunities. These include a teaching internship in Sweden for six months, participation in the Japan Fulbright Memorial Fund trip to visit and learn about schools in Japan, and an education that is just short of a doctorate. I hold degrees from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, as well as Tennessee State University. My degrees range from a BA in Psychology and an MS in Elementary Education with a concentration in Urban Multi-Culture Education to an EdS in Administration and Supervision. I have taught grades 26 and served as a literacy coach for grades K3. Each experience shapes who I am as an educator.

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The opinions expressed in Top Teaching are strictly those of the author and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Scholastic Inc.