Classroom Ideas

14 Great Phonics Activities for Preschoolers – Education Article

It’s difficult to overstate how important reading and language are. These skills are the foundation for a lifetime of success, so it’s only natural if you’re seeking out ways to make sure the little ones in your care are on solid ground. One tried-and-true method for building literacy skills is through the use of phonics activities. In this article we’ll help explain what phonics are and share some excellent phonics activities we’ve found from preschool professionals. What are phonics? It’s…

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Promoting Effective Classroom Participation – Bright Classroom Ideas – Education Article

Classroom participation is a feature of many course designs. It can result in insightful comments and interesting connections being made by students, and can foster a high level of energy and enthusiasm in the classroom learning environment. However, poorly managed participation can also lead to instructor frustration and student confusion. Below are strategies to consider using to make your classroom participation more effective. What does “participation” mean?  Be clear with your definition and intention. Participation is often equated…

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Studying School Air Quality and Climate Science – National Geographic Education Blog – Education Article

Today is World Environment Day, the United Nations day for encouraging worldwide awareness and action to protect our environment. This year’s theme is air pollution. This post is written by Michael Cruse, an ESL and Special Education teacher at the Arlington Career Center in Arlington, Virginia. His school recently studied the air quality in their classrooms. I want you to close your eyes and picture someplace where the fresh air fills your lungs as your breath and a sense of calmness…

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Summer Online Safety Rules for Students – Education Article

As school wraps up, chances are you’ll be sending students off with fond farewells (and a summer reading list). But it’s also a good time to chat about ways to make screen time fun and educational too. The American Academy of Pediatrics says that kids spend up to seven hours a day on screens, and summertime can make those numbers climb higher. And while we can encourage balance and offscreen hobbies, we can also make time onscreen more meaningful and…

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Creating Experiences Rather Than “Lessons” – National Geographic Education Blog – Education Article

Our Strategy Share series features innovative ideas, projects, and approaches from inside and outside our community of educators. The following post was written by 2018 Grosvenor Teacher Fellow Becky Schnekser, an elementary science teacher from Virginia Beach, Virginia. In the world of education, approaches, theories, and research change as swiftly as the wind. It can be exhausting to keep up and frustrating to implement. I suggest a new way of thinking about education—one that does not require you to convince someone…

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Best Funny Books for Kids, As Chosen by Educators – Education Article

Every classroom library needs a great selection of funny books for kids. They can motivate even the most reluctant readers and introduce vocabulary and concepts in memorable ways. Belly laughing over books together is perfect for building classroom community, and it makes read aloud fun for you, too! These 15 books are some of our favorites for getting kids and adults giggling. We want to keep you and your class laughing out loud all year long! That’s why our friends at…

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Genius Hour in Your Classroom – Education Article

What if you could learn about anything you wanted to? What are you interested in? What are you passionate about? What do you want to tell the world? How are you going to change the world? There are only three guidelines: Research something. Create something. Share it. Welcome to Genius Hour! What if you could learn about anything you wanted to? This is how educators around the globe have introduced Genius Hour to their classes. Suspense in the classroom has…

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23 Collaborative Art Projects That Bring out Everyone’s Creative Side – Education Article

Art can be an amazing uniting force in the world. Student art pieces often give teachers a look inside a child’s mind that they might not otherwise get. Collaborative art projects bring out the best in each participant, creating masterpieces that are so much more than the sum of their art. Here are some of the best collaborative art activities for kids in any grade. 1. Paint a river of rocks. Painted rocks are all the rage these days, but…

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10 Team-Building Games For Critical Thinking – Education Article

One of education’s primary goals is to groom the next generation of little humans to succeed in the “real world.” Yes, there are mounds of curricula they must master in a wide breadth of subjects, but education does not begin and end with a textbook or test. Other skills must be honed, too, not the least of which is how to get along with their peers and work well with others. This is not something that can be cultivated through…

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End-of-Year Screen Time Is Out of Control, and We Can Do Better – Education Article

Ask any teacher what challenges we face in the classroom, and I guarantee you one of the top 10 answers will be screens. Probably one of the top five. How do we march bravely forth with Lord of the Flies and expect to compete with the instant gratification offered by YouTube or Fortnite? How do we convince a generation accustomed to in-your-face, immersive entertainment that intellectual struggle is rewarding, can even be a source of joy? And of course, there…

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End-of-Year Teacher Hacks to Make the School Year Easier – Education Article

These last days of school can be difficult, but we know you’ll hang in there. To help, we collected great tips and teacher hacks to make your classroom cleaner, your students happier, and your summer a little closer. These end-of-year teacher hacks will give you more time to enjoy all those great little classroom moments that you love about teaching. 1. Because it’s time to get them ready to move on.  How cute are these “First Grader in Training” badges?…

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My 3 Most Memorable Lessons As A Teacher – Education Article

Teachers, admit it: we’ve all taught those lessons that flop. The instructions and goals (or objectives) aren’t clear, the activities are boring, and worst of all student interest is low. What seemed like such an engaging lesson in your head as you played it out turned out to be anything but in real life, and you’ve made a note to scrap it by jotting “never teach it again” in your lesson plan book. But every now and again you create or borrow…

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Letters to Our Future Selves – Education Article

It was a hot-sunny day in August 2016 when my dear friend, Christina, a third-grade teacher on Long Island, off-handedly mentioned an assignment she had given her eight-year-old students every year since she began teaching over 20 years ago.  She instructs them to write a letter to their 18-year-old selves.  Because the children are only eight years old, her classroom often erupts with questions like: “What do you mean by my future self?” Christina must prompt them to imagine themselves…

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Give Your Students a Subscription to Exploration! – National Geographic Education Blog – Education Article

Jennifer Burgin is an educator at Oakridge Elementary in Arlington, Virginia, a part of Arlington Public Schools. She was named Arlington Teacher of the Year in 2016 and has co-authored a nonfiction children’s book, A is for Arlington. As a 2017 Grosvenor Teacher Fellow, Jennifer shares her #EducatorExplorer experiences after completing an expedition to the Galápagos Islands, and her plans for future exploration. For more from Jennifer, follow her on Twitter @MrsJBurgin or on her blog, Educator Explorer. I just…

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#ITeachMentalHealth Opens Up an Important Conversation in Classrooms – Education Article

Over the past week, there’s been an outpouring of teachers sharing why they teach mental health, and we couldn’t be more supportive of this latest social media movement. Using the hashtag #iteachmentalhealth, educators are helping to start an important conversation about mental health issues and the stigma around mental illness. Instagram users @makingastatementinsped and @appleyeverafter1 launched the movement on May 3, offering a free printable for educators to customize and share their own reasons for teaching mental health. View this…

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DIY Fidgets You Can Make On a Budget for Your Classroom – Education Article

Kids and adults alike have always needed to fidget, some more than others. There used to be an expectation that students sit up straight and still for long periods of time in class. But now the idea of doodling, using sketch notes in the classroom, and even fidgeting are much more accepted and promoted. Sometimes fidgeting is even encouraged and supported.  You can find many fidget toys on the market, but what if you’re a teacher on a budget? We’ve got…

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