A research study released by the National Assessment of Educational Progress asserts that 32 percent of students in the United States are proficient in mathematics by eighth grade while only 23 percent are proficient at Grade 12. A major culprit in the case of such a robust deficiency in higher level mathematics is algebra. According to a cross section of our nation's educators, the academic downfall of many students lies in their ability to tackle algebraic concepts with a satisfactory level of proficiency. Because of this, instructional intervention in algebra is essential for several reasons.
Although their vision is normal or near normal, students with cortical visual impairments have difficulty incorporating visual information given in class. Many times, cortical visual impairment is due to brain development issues, injury or disease. Teachers can use various strategies to help students with CVI be successful in the classroom.
Commas can be tricky, and students often lack confidence placing them in sentences correctly. In order to master the comma rules, students in all grade levels must be exposed to them frequently through practice. By incorporating humorous situations and multisensory activities into their lesson plans, teachers can help make comma lessons less tedious.
According to the National Commission on Teaching and America's Future, over half of teachers leave the field after just five years. Ironically, as the rates of attrition increase among teachers, the level of job satisfaction correspondingly decreases.This is because attrition among teachers adversely impacts the workloads, pressures, support, and feelings of isolation in new and veteran teachers.
Former president George W. Bush once remarked, “A lot of students don’t like taking tests ... tough!” In this quote, President Bush recognized both the importance, as well as the inevitability, of assessments in school. In middle school, assessments help teachers determine the best way to guide students as they transition from elementary grades to high school.
Diversity in elementary schools ensures that every student gets a fair shot at a good education. Educators who work with diverse students are able to adjust their teaching styles to meet individual student needs, and some staff members may be better equipped to do this than others. Gauging staff readiness to work with diverse students can help you determine who to assign to diversity work and who needs some additional help and training.
Students of all ages struggle with subject-verb agreement, so instilling a thorough understanding of these grammar rules for first-grade students is very important. Furthermore, organizing a lesson plan doesn't have to be dry just because it teaches grammar. You can begin with engaging exercises and reinforce your instruction with games and interactive reviews.
Social studies is a diverse field in which students are required to demonstrate the ability to apply knowledge in both concrete and abstract ways. Whether it's creating a map in a geography class or discussing Freudian concepts in a psychology course, the ability to interact with the social sciences in a "higher order" way is critical component of creating well-rounded students.
The best chemistry labs are as entertaining as they are informative. They should simultaneously demonstrate the lesson and pique student interest in the laws that govern chemical change. While they are by no means the only way to entrance your students, labs involving fire are often the most exciting, as they display the different ways certain elements can impact a flame's color and intensity.
Making clear what is expected of students is one of a teacher's most crucial responsibilities. The clarity and consistency of your standards can ultimately affect how well the students grasp new material, their level of trust in you and their drive to achieve. You can establish instructional expectations by setting specific rules and procedures, planning clear learning objectives and giving constructive verbal and written assessment of student progress.
Formal and informal assessments are tools educators use to help identify students who are struggling with math. Formal assessments are usually written tests, while informal assessments are more casual observations and checklists. The assessment used should be based on what teachers want to know. Using formal assessments will provide data regarding whether students have grasped sets of concepts, while informal assessments show daily knowledge of student learning.
Being able to understand spoken language is an important life skill for students at every grade level, and improving comprehension skills can be frustrating for both students and teachers when progress is slow. Whether your students are English language learners or native speakers who just need a little help, several effective strategies exist for improving their listening comprehension skills.
The newly adopted Common Core State Standards provide specific direction on how to prepare all students to be college and career ready. In fifth grade, children are able to read for academic content, with less focus on learning the specific decoding and phonics skills of the earlier grades. Teachers need to expose students to a broad range of high-quality and challenging literary and informational texts, and instruct them on how to read deeply for meaning. Using activities to inspire kids to read with purpose is helpful for teachers striving to meet the goals of the state standards initiative now in…
"Walk with me to skull." No, wait, that should be read, “Walk with me to school.” Students who continually misread words are not reading for comprehension. To identify these students, teachers can assess comprehension skills through cloze and maze procedures. These assessments let teachers know which students are having trouble understanding what they’re reading. As a result, teachers can modify their strategies to help those students improve.
Creative writing units are a great way for sixth-graders to use their imaginations to discover their voices as writers. Creative writing also provides an opportunity to learn about the elements of an effective story, particularly when students enter the revision process. A creative writing checklist that includes plot, setting and character development, as well as word choice and grammar, can help students become successful editors and evaluators of their work.
Although many students enjoy reading, the thought of writing a book report may put a damper on their enjoyment. Allowing students to have some alternatives to writing about the characters, setting and plot can engage them while giving a teacher the information she needs to assess a student’s understanding of specific elements of literature.
The concept of journaling typically brings to mind diaries filled with the private, melodramatic confessions of teenagers. In the language arts classroom, however, daily, focused journal writing can be an effective tool for improving reading and writing skills. Journaling can build a positive atmosphere of trust in your classroom, provide a free space for students to practice their skills and kindle a new interest in writing.
Evidence-based design is a research-centered approach to building in which research provides a scientific rationale for the design of classrooms, playgrounds and other school environments. Evidence-based design has linked specific design choices with academic achievement, health and wellness and psychological and social development. Evidence-based design has significant implications for all stakeholders in elementary and secondary schools.
Using innovative teaching methods across the curriculum helps students develop critical and creative thinking skills. Stimulating the individual to think independently and make innovative connections provides a foundation for advanced academic work. Students who engage in critical and creative thinking are more likely to have positive self-esteem and be engaged in the classroom experience. This makes learning fun and motivates ongoing interest in school subjects.
Amelia Bedelia is one of those characters in children's literature sure to have kids giggling while reading about her antics. She does her very best, but often seems to make a big mess, and children tend to relate to some of her misadventures. Guided reading of "Merry Christmas, Amelia Bedelia" by Peggy Parish helps small groups of readers, likely kindergarten to second-grade students, read on their own, but within an adult-guided structure that ensures they understand what they read and build the skills they need to improve reading skills, comprehension and literary devices. Guided reading is characterized by activities and…
Studies suggest that socioeconomic status has a big impact on a child's performance in school. In general, students from poorer backgrounds lag behind their wealthier peers when it comes to key metrics of school performance, including test scores and graduation rates. Socioeconomic status affects a child's educational performance for a variety of social, economic and emotional reasons.
An open-ended question in language arts is used to promote critical thinking. Teachers use them to connect with student curiosity and facilitate engaged learning. Design questions that do not have a specific or correct answer. Start with how, what, where, when or why. Set boundaries when writing an open-ended question to keep students on topic and encourage discussion. Design the question to foster student interaction that is cooperative instead of competitive.
Student observation reports are written feedback of student behavior and performance. An observation is performed by a professional that is not the student’s teacher. School psychologists, special education teachers or another teacher may observe student behavior and document their progress. Student observations provide meaningful feedback for teachers by identifying student progress and the level at which a student is performing. Observations are designed to hold students and educators accountable for the learning process.
Every year about 3 million students drop out of high school. Though there are myriad reasons why a kid might drop out of school, many quit because they struggle academically and socially. More specifically, a student's interpersonal relationships and inherent learning abilities -- or disabilities -- can lead to an uncomfortable or even hostile learning environment.
Icebreakers are short and lively games or activities that people can engage in to facilitate the getting-to-know-you process. These activities are particularly useful in educational situations when teachers have a large group of students to get to know in a short period of time. While some icebreakers are designed to help students and teachers learn more about each other's personalities and interests, others are extremely useful for simply memorizing names.
The ability to analyze the constant flow of visual information is something most people take for granted. Along with other tasks, a child must develop visual perceptional skills to identify differences and similarities in objects, remember number sequences and find her shoes on a cluttered floor. According to "The Journal of Learning Disabilities," visual perception is correlated with reading achievement. Visual perceptual development can come naturally but may require professional intervention.
To some students, math can seem like an endless stream of flash cards, worksheets and drills -- boring stuff. Though everyone eventually needs to learn the basics, part of the beauty of math is its practical applications. When students engage with mathematical concepts in a more meaningful way, they'll not only learn what they need to, they'll have fun doing it.
Working with children who have emotional or behavioral issues is a challenging job that requires a lot of time and patience. Teachers who work with emotional or behavioral disordered children need extra items in their classroom to facilitate student learning. There are grants available for teachers who work with behavior issues to get materials and supplies for their classroom or to create innovative programs for their students.
Though remedial math teachers have multiple responsibilities, their primary job is to successfully implement a curriculum so each and every student comes to understand mathematical concepts well enough to be successful in the classroom. To accomplish that goal, math teachers must possess certain competencies that enable them to effectively take a curriculum and get it into the brains of the students.
In language arts classes, creative writing is one way to inspire student enthusiasm. One of the most important elements to teach, though, is that writing is a process that takes commitment and work from inspiration to publication. You can inspire students to practice their creative writing skills through brainstorming activities, writing workshop and the publication of a class anthology.
Deductive reasoning is a system for drawing conclusions about a subject. The system moves in the direction of general to specific. For example, consider the general hypothesis that all fish have gills. Then, consider that great white sharks are fish. You can infer the specific conclusion that all great white sharks have gills. Deductive reasoning can be taught using a variety of activities, many of which can be applied to the context of the life sciences.
A science experiment on beans is an inexpensive, straightforward way to explain the different parts of a seed and its functions to your third-grade class. Your science lesson should include an examination of the anatomy of a bean, as well as a growing experiment to solidify the information. This one- to two-week lesson can provide valuable information on the structure and characteristics of living things and the life cycle of plants.
While some students may be able to go through their school careers without having difficulties with their behavior, others have trouble making it through the day without exhibiting behavior that makes it difficult to learn -- for themselves and for others. For some of these students, behavior performance contracts may offer a way for students to learn to control their unruly instincts -- although some might question their effectiveness.
Reading comprehension actually begins with pre-reading activities. Students understand a text better when they have previewed the story using reading strategies such as connecting to prior knowledge and predicting story elements. Reading activities for previewing a story range from the students privately making predictions and connections to interactive group activities that allow them to share their knowledge and predictions.
Students begin learning about capital letters and end punctuation marks in kindergarten, and they continue to practice and apply these skills throughout school. While it is not difficult for students to understand the basic requirements for writing, they do not always remember to include these in their own compositions. Teachers need to reinforce and review punctuation and capitalization rules and use various instructional methods to emphasize these elements.
The No Child Left Behind Act, or NCLB, required highly qualified teachers in every classroom beginning in the 2005-2006 school year. When NCLB lapsed in 2007, President Obama gave states flexibility in enacting requirements but maintained the NCLB highly qualified standards as baseline requirements for teachers. Additionally, the U.S. Department of Education granted 34 states an extension to meet requirements by the end of the 2014-2015 school year. Under the NCLB, teachers must have a minimum of a bachelor's degree, be fully state certified and demonstrate subject matter competency in core subjects.
The United States has the second-highest child poverty rate in the developed world, despite being home to more millionaires than any other country. Students growing up in poverty are less likely to do well academically and to achieve financial success than their wealthier peers. Since 1983, when the National Commission on Excellence in Education issued the report, “A Nation at Risk,” U.S. leaders have focused on education reforms that address poverty.
Overwhelmed by crammed-packed curricula and the pressure of high-stakes testing, teachers may wonder how they can find time to teach math problems one way, let alone in multiple ways. As the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics continues to stress the process of problem solving, reasoning and proof, communication, representation and connections, teachers are expected to facilitate authentic learning experiences that challenge their students to find many ways to solve the same problem.
While children with sensory issues may once have been labelled "unruly," more people are recognizing sensory processing disorder, or SPD, as a legitimate issue. Even if a child doesn't have full-blown SPD, she might still be oversensitive to certain stimuli. Knowing that a student has sensory issues can help you work with the student, the parents and other professionals to find solutions that work for everyone.
Student progress monitoring and curriculum-based measurement are sometimes used interchangeably, but CBM is actually a specific form of progress monitoring. According to founder Dr. Stanley L. Deno, CBM was originally designed as an assessment tool for special education teachers to remediate learning disabilities. CBM has grown to address a broad range of issues in both special and general education.
Beginning or struggling readers often lack fluency because they stumble over words they don't know, read words incorrectly, read slowly or lack expression. A child who doesn't read fluently often struggles with understanding what she reads since she has to work so hard just to get through the passage. With exercises that specifically focus on fluency, you can help your students improve the reading flow.
With the exception of open-enrollment campuses, schools of varying types ranging from preschools to medical schools use screening exams as criteria for student selection. Exams such as the Naglieri Nonverbal Ability Test used for placement in gifted and talented programs and the Perceptual Ability Test used primarily for dental schools rely heavily on visual spatial ability. A study published in August 2010 in the "International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education" indicated that visual perception is central to understanding many concepts across curricula.
The early signs that a student may eventually dropout may be present as early as middle school. Research conducted by Balfanz and Herzog in 2005 revealed that middle school students who are absent excessively, fail specific subjects or have behavior problems are more apt to dropout. Additionally, retention increases a students' likelihood of dropping out. These signs are sometimes interrelated, and when combined may set a student up for a lifetime of frustration and failure.
Principals, as the leaders of their schools, are in a great position to assume a dedicated role in the drive to eradicate bullying among students. School principals have an obligation to educate students, faculty and staff on what constitutes bullying, how to recognize the signs of bullying, and what actions are appropriate, should bullying occur. The principal is also responsible for securing external educational resources and for outlining and enforcing consequences to punish offenders.
Cooperative learning creates a student-led environment for exploring topics taught in the classroom, but group work sometimes allows some students to slack. A student who doesn't understand the information or simply doesn't want to do the work sits back while his group members complete the project. By integrating individual accountability into the group work, you can increase participation from all students.
Giving the gift of music can last a lifetime. Music may inspire students to become more creative and help them find a healthy outlet for stress. It may even facilitate learning in other areas, according to Mary Luehrisen, executive director of the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Foundation. To be a good music teacher, you need to possess specific skills and feel passionate about promoting music education to your students and the community.
Blasting rock 'n' roll during a math test or putting on dance music during a reading lesson are more likely to be a distraction than a benefit, but background music can be incorporated into the classroom with positive benefits. The right kind of music can improve concentration and help students remember what they've learned. Playing certain kinds of music for certain subjects and activities is key to reaping the benefits that background music can offer.
Building a synergistic team that's committed and excited about teaching requires a positive work environment driven by shared governance. If you're a team leader, assess the school's current culture and determine what's needed to promote teamwork and collaboration. Ask team members to do likewise; compare their analysis with yours to devise a template for training sessions. It's critical to involve your team in the process so you'll have buy-in for other professional developmental opportunities.
The traditional classroom exam has long been the standard for student evaluations. However, the portfolio assessment, a collection of student work compiled over a period of time, has become increasingly popular because it is able to show individual improvement and ability in ways tests cannot. While they are both successful evaluation techniques, standard classroom exams and portfolios entail different methods of grading and levels of student involvement.
In today's fast-paced classrooms, students have to master many objectives in a relatively short amount of time. This might cause them to hurriedly complete their work. Your students might already be in the habit of rushing through work so they can pull out a favorite book to read, draw pictures or talk with a classmate. Emphasizing the benefits of presenting quality work is crucial.
Teaching special education students how to punctuate their writing can sometimes be challenging. While students can understand the use of conversation in writing, the proper use of quotation marks gives many students trouble. Incorporating some cartoons or movement can make the lessons more meaningful to the students and help students retain the concepts.
Classroom management, compliance and motivation can be a tricky business. If you are considering what type of rewards and motivation to use in your classroom, you have options. The main choice you have is whether to offer material or non-material rewards and deciding what you want your students to ultimately get out of the experience.
Summative and formative assessments are used to track a student's progress and improve instructional strategies in K-12 classrooms. Summative assessments are traditional exams most of us associate with schools -- standardized tests, finals, chapter exams and occasional quizzes. Formative assessments are incorporated into daily lessons. They include guided classroom exercises, discussions and questions that help teachers gauge how well students understand the covered material.
Seismic waves are energy waves produced either by the breaking of rock on the Earth's surface or by an explosion. There are four types of seismic waves: primary, secondary, Love and Rayleigh, and all can be demonstrated easily using a single Slinky (or a generic helical spring), a stopwatch and three students. Hands-on experiments for learning about waves provides a tangible context for a subject that can at times seem overly complex and abstract.
Students with limited English skills have between five and seven years to build their language skills into proficiency. Researchers agree that usually after seven years of speaking English, most students are proficient. But not all students acquire English rapidly, and many need additional services. Several factors can hinder a student's progress in learning English.
Dyslexia is a type of reading disability where students have difficulty in decoding printed alphabets, words and sentences. An article by PBS Kids reports that 15 percent of Americans have dyslexia and, according to the Canadian Dyslexia Association, people who are diagnosed with dyslexia can have average or above intelligence, but may have problems with decoding which causes problems in other areas. Dyslexic students may also suffer from poor reading retention and comprehension.
A special education student's Individualized Education Plan provides the blueprint for parents, teachers and other school personnel to understand that student’s unique learning challenges. According to federal law, an IEP team must review the plan annually and reevaluate it triennially. All members of the team, including the student, parents and any school personnel working with the student, should be allowed to contribute to IEP creation, evaluation and discussion.
Farms are an integral part of our agriculture and food industry, and children should be educated on what happens in and around a farmhouse. Your farm lesson should include books, art, information-based worksheets and a hands-on activity. Successful completion of this lesson should result in a new respect for farm life and the importance of this profession.
While the U.S. Constitution may be more than 200 years old, the principles it expresses are timeless. These days, fewer Americans truly understand the Constitution and the various protections it affords all citizens. It is imperative that teachers find creative ways to educate students about the seven principles of the Constitution as well as the value and relevance they hold in society today.
Art class teachers at elementary schools and community art centers often need checklists to help them remember important classroom details. Some items require daily attention, while others might demand only biweekly or weekly consideration. Because art students need access to art supplies, equipment and finished-work centers, classrooms are often busy with activity. As an art teacher, you want to create a well-organized classroom so students can effectively complete assignments without chaos, unwanted messes and confusion.
Exegesis and expository style teaching are two modes of teaching that are related, but slightly different. While expository emphasizes the description and analysis of teaching materials to generate basic student understanding, exegesis emphasizes the description and analysis of teaching materials to generate critical student understanding. As Robert Thomas, Professor of New Testament at The Master's Seminary points out, the subtle differences between exposition and exegesis are commonly considered in preaching, though these same differences hold for teaching theories as well. Essentially, when using expository style teaching, teachers present information for students to absorb and recall. When using exegesis style teaching,…
In a subject that relies heavily on experimentation, project-based learning, or PBL, can provide another way to integrate discovery into the science classroom. The Buck Institute for Education's research has found that project-based instruction can be more effective in science instruction than traditional teaching strategies. PBL was found to increase achievement on standardized tests, increase retention and increase achievement in lower-performing students.
Question poems can be a great teaching tool because students like to ask questions about themselves and the world around them. For younger children, reading and writing question poems helps to reinforce punctuation concepts such as the use of question marks, quotation marks and periods. Question poems can be in structured form -- such as four-line stanzas with a basic rhyme scheme -- but they also appear in many other forms from free verse to haiku.
Children held back a grade because of poor performance and failing grades tend to exhibit anxiety and are more prone to eventually dropping out than those who have had no retention in their early school years. To prevent retention and help students succeed, teachers can adopt various proven techniques designed to reach failing kids and help them navigate through their difficulties.
Physics may not have the whiz-bang excitement of chemistry, but children can quickly begin to identify the ways that the field becomes applicable in everyday life. Though it may incorporate a lot of math at the high school and college levels, even elementary children will appreciate learning the scientific laws of the world, and can start to learn to use the scientific method of discovery.
In order to improve the quality of a teacher's performance or a newly implemented school program, faculty and staff should conduct midpoint and final evaluations. This involves observing, note-taking and scoring the performance of various predetermined elements of a sample course. A proper evaluation identifies classroom needs, expectations and results, and provides encouragement and constructive criticism for growth.
Students interact with people who have disabilities every day. Hands-on projects give students an understanding of the difficulties associated with physical and mental disabilities. Developing a sense of empathy for those with disabilities helps students work better with others in groups and one on one. Students will develop an appreciation of the very real contributions all people can make to our lives.
Folktales are in every culture of every culture across the world. They are important stories that keep cultural traditions alive and allow older generations to share wisdom with younger generations. In a sense, as stories with a moral or theme, folktales kind of teach themselves. When examined academically, however, teachers can encourage students to engage those elements that make folktales simultaneously universal, yet culturally unique.
A principal oversees the entire educational process for an elementary, junior high or high school. Principals often play a major role in the level of education students get and the overall atmosphere of the school. While many principals have admirable qualities, it is specific actions that distinguish really good principals from average or weak ones.
In the sixth and seventh grade, amid significant physical, emotional and social changes, middle school students sharpen their focus on fractions, decimals and percents. A restaurant project that allows students to explore their own solutions to realistic problems in real-world contexts can help ground these abstract ideas in an engaging experience that keeps students' attention, motivates them to learn, and fosters their long-term retention of key concepts and skills.
Parents generally have a right to observe their students in school, and federal law specifically protects this right for parents of students with disabilities. Some states establish specific laws governing those rights. For example, in California, parents have a right to observe a classroom, but there are no specific procedures listed for such observations. Because the law is often unclear, a teacher's rights when a parent requests an observation depend primarily on your school's policies.
Literature represents and highlights the human condition. Readers often discover that a book can help them grow by pushing them to rethink their views. Instructors can use stories of people's struggles and emotions to promote personal development in their classrooms. Such character education, or education that promotes more conscientious thinking, does not have to be the main focus of your lesson, but you can use the following activities to extend your literature lessons.
Diagnostic and prescriptive teaching strategies are intended for students who have difficulty learning in a traditional classroom without support. Diagnostic assessment and the development of a prescriptive teaching method are individualized procedures for students who may have learning or behavior problems. Students may remain in a traditional classroom with modifications or be placed in a classroom that can better attend to their needs.
Middle school curricula often include "The Outsiders," a book by S.E. Hinton that offers numerous opportunities for character essays and projects. You can have students discuss character traits, the meaning of being an outsider or how they identify with one of the characters. In addition to straight character analysis, any of those ideas provides the prompt for an essay and theme for attendant projects.
Understanding the greatest common factor and least common multiple may be intimidating concepts for students. Make it easy for children to learn about these ideas -- and for you to teach them -- by defining the concepts simply and showing students how to use the ladder method to find the GCF and LCM for a set of two numbers.
Remediating lower-level students in science can be overwhelming for many teachers. Sometimes, the sheer breadth of the category can be daunting. However, with a solid strategy to guide students through the process, educators can propel their students in a direction that allows them to catch up quickly, with the students driven to engage in self-learning beyond the remediation process.
Preschool and kindergarten teachers foster a tremendous amount of growth in their young students, in topics ranging from language to mathematics. Though no one expects a preschoolers to know math facts, they can start to understand mathematical concepts, such as "adding to" and "taking away from." They can also recognize geometric shapes and learn to count. Early understanding of such things sets young children up for future success.
Common Core Standards, which are being adopted nationwide, specify four critical areas for seventh grade math instruction. Seventh graders practice manipulating fractions and percents to determine proportional relationships, eventually working their way to statistics and probability. Seventh grade math teachers also introduce them to equations related to geometry and algebra. In order to make practice and learning fun, use creative worksheets that allow students to explore the target mathematical concepts.
Some people have known they wanted to teach since they first walked through the kindergarten classroom doors. Others come to the decision a bit later in life, either after graduation, or at a time when it would be inconvenient to change majors. Fortunately, having a degree in education is rarely a hard-and-fast requirement for securing a teaching job. You can still get a career as a teacher with a different type of degree.
Teaching students to write poetry allows them the opportunity to learn how to fine tune their language, explore creativity and express themselves in a different genre. Introducing students to a variety of poetry writing techniques will only help to increase their writing and understanding of poetry and other types of writing.
Note taking is a skill students use all through their secondary and collegiate education. They will need study notes for tests and writing notes for essays and reports. Students use note taking methods to break down text for better understanding. Therefore, it is important that fifth and sixth grade students learn how to take good notes to become efficient students in the upper grades.
While single-sex schools may affect the learning environment to produce higher tests scores, it actually may be the character-building students receive due to the stricter, more demanding programs in place at unisex institutions that leads to the success rates, according to the American Psychological Association. At the same time, students have little exposure to social settings that involve the opposite sex and may have more problems adjusting when they leave school.
For most young students, mastering fractions is achieved over the course of several years. The recently implemented Common Core Standards provide sequencing for the teaching of fractions and outline specific skills that should be covered in each school year. The gradual introduction allows for the scaffolding of skills through primary and middle school years.
Exposed to caustic elections, partisan politics and reports of governmental ineptness, it’s no wonder students sometime balk when teachers turn the talk to lessons focusing on the U.S. government. Particularly if your students are less than enthused about the subject, you may need to go above and beyond to bring life and relevance to the lessons of U.S. governance.
The Common Core Standards are a set of national standards that have been adopted by almost all 50 states as of the 2013-2014 school year. The purpose of these standards is to nationalize the standards of education as a nation in order to level the playing field for students attending schools in every state. The problem is as the standards are raised for our students, standards are not being raised for our teachers.
Inferences are a kind of everyday detective work that involves using background knowledge and a bit of logic to interpret meaning implied by hints and clues. For students accustomed to literal understanding, making inferences will engage their minds in higher-level thinking used in reading, science, social studies and math. Working with inferencing strategies will teach students how to employ background knowledge and critical thinking skills to make inferences in each subject.
Qualitative action research provides teachers the opportunity to progressively develop and improve professional practice. The qualitative action researcher analyzes their current practice and identifies areas in need of change or support. The personal, professional and community impacts of action research will enhance the success of both the teacher and students.
Primary school teachers play critical roles in the lives of children, offering them the basic educational framework that they'll use for the rest of their academic careers. From teaching kids to read to suggesting resources for children recently diagnosed with learning disabilities, primary school teachers can make a big difference in children's lives. Some areas, however, are experiencing a teacher shortage, and even in areas with plenty of teachers, recruiting new, highly qualified teachers to replace those who retire or move is a key goal.
Children learn to read in stages. There are various names for these phases -- beginning, early or emergent, intermediate or transitional, and fluent. Students progress through these stages as they learn more complex skills. Children who are in the intermediate phase of reading are already able to decode, or sound out, words. Teachers often deliver some phonics instruction, but students usually apply phonics skills automatically as they read. Comprehension and fluency are the main goals at this developmental stage.
Any lesson on figurative language terms will usually include teaching similes and metaphors. Most students need examples from literature to help them understand the concept, but special education students might need more than just a quick lesson to make sure they fully understand the concepts. Teachers can help these students by incorporating some hands-on activities to teach these concepts.
Most school principals say they enjoy their jobs. However, the job is not without its problems, which seem to be increasing rapidly. Whatever a school's issues -- low performance levels, lack of student motivation, teacher dissatisfaction -- it all stops with the principal. Teachers and principals both believe principals should be accountable and should set leadership standards in their schools. Yet principals feel their hands are tied for numerous reasons, including an inability to make the decisions necessary for their individual schools.
Teachers, like many other professionals, have to give written notice whenever leaving a position, especially when retiring. Retirement letters can be as varied as the teachers themselves, from covering the basic facts to much longer explanations of why the teacher is leaving. Some information must be included in a retirement letter. The teacher’s name, position, school district and date of retirement are essential pieces of information. Some people include reasons why they are retiring or what they plan to do during retirement, while others use the letter to discuss their feelings about the school, the district or the current state…
Teachers know that plot summaries in a literary analysis essay provide important context for readers. But many students struggle to write plot summaries and often include too much information or not enough. Teachers can use a variety of techniques to help students write a clear and concise plot summary in a literary analysis essay.
A common misconception among students is that objects in motion eventually come to rest because of the lack of a force pushing them, rather than the presence of a force -- most often friction -- slowing them down. Using vivid classroom demonstrations to teach students about friction and inertia can help them to move beyond such misconceptions.
Mystery, beauty, legend. Almost everyone has seen the Mona Lisa, and it makes for rich education. The painting is a doorway into art technique, math, history, the role of icons and one of the most famous men ever to live. The painting itself makes for a great story. It has been attacked and stolen, depicts an unknown person and may contain secret codes. This is a lesson that should provoke questions and lead to hands-on experiences.
June Colbert’s “The Last Boy” challenges the reader’s notions of family and survival, offering a compelling story about a young boy alone in a post-apocalyptic world. “The Last Boy” focuses on Ben, who runs away from home and hides in a bomb shelter, only to emerge later to find his family has been killed in an apocalyptic attack. Written as Ben's diary, the book challenges students to reflect on their own family life.
Most children know that calories have something to do with food and health, but many don’t have a clear idea of what calories actually are. Younger students often think that all calories are unhealthy. Teaching children what calories are and how the body uses them is an important step in teaching them to eat healthy.
According to the National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities, approximately 12 children out of every 1000 deal with visual impairments. The 2009 report from the American Foundation for the Blind indicates more than 55,000 students fall into the category of legally blind. Since such disabilities can impact a student's classroom experience, accommodations help those with visual impairments learn more effectively.
Popularized in the early 1900s by John Dewey, constructivism has been verified by neuroscientists as one of the most natural educational practices in schools today. Often referred to as experiential-based learning or hands-on learning, constructivism calls for students to build knowledge through hands-on experience and experimentation. Students are also required to rely upon their past knowledge and experiences to generate new information and knowledge. In middle and high schools, students can be educated via a constructivist approach if the instructor helps students’ look back on past experiences so as to build on them.
Concept maps, also called mind maps, are a great way to show students how to organize information and their thinking about a topic. Maps can be adapted to almost any lesson and any design. They give students a hands-on task that actively engages them during lessons, and educators can use maps as an instant form of assessment.