Building a great learning space in the classroom is important for helping students grow. Teachers can create a dynamic learning environment by incorporating learning centers. Of course, planning effective and engaging centers is wonderful on paper but the follow through takes work! Making the most of center time calls for some careful planning and smart execution.
What methods inspire your students to write? Discover inventive strategies and unconventional approaches within Writers Workshop to cultivate resilient writers, empowering students for creative and expressive self-expression.
When I embarked on my teaching career as a 4th-grade teacher in Verrado, Arizona, the vast desert landscape was a far cry from the familiar surroundings of my hometown in Detroit, Michigan. Transitioning from a state surrounded by lakes to the sparse desert evoked a deep appreciation for the resilience of the land and the communities flourishing in this seemingly inhospitable terrain.
Today is Pretend to Be a Time Traveler Day (December 8, 2023). Pretend to Be a Time Traveler Day whimsically celebrates the allure of time travel, sparking curiosity and reflection on the mysteries of temporal exploration in popular culture. Seeing this day on my calendar takes me back to a special memory from my early teaching days. It was a time when I, like my students, became a time traveler of sorts. We delved into a fascinating project to celebrate our town's 100-year anniversary, a project that left an indelible mark on my teaching philosophy.
The concept was simple yet powerful - students could choose any time frame, past or future, and create a time capsule representing that era. This not only celebrated our community's rich history but also allowed students to explore the spirit of change over time. Today I see Pretend to Be a Time Traveler Day on my calendar —a day that may not seem very important—it brings back memories of the happiness and positive impact such projects had on students and teachers.
Application for Teachers
For fellow educators, consider channeling the spirit of time travel in your classrooms. Encourage students to take pride in their local history by assigning a time capsule project. Share the process of the project on digital displays throughout the school campus to involve everyone in the school community. Connecting with the community's past not only fosters a deeper appreciation for the present but also creates lasting memories that stand the test of time.
Teacher professional development plays a crucial role in fostering the successful implementation of social-emotional learning (SEL) and enhancing student learning outcomes. Educators recognize the vital importance of nurturing the social and emotional well-being of our students, alongside their academic growth. In my experience facilitating a variety of professional developmentsessions and workshops, student well-being inevitably becomes a topic of interest. I want to take this opportunity to share various ways in which well-designed, high-quality teacher PD can provide educators with the knowledge, skills, and resources necessary to implement SEL effectively.Together we can create a nurturing environment that fosters students' social, emotional, and academic development.