As the first half of the school year is coming to an end, your life is likely full of grading final papers, administering end-of-course tests, and conducting evaluations. You probably haven’t touched a book for your personal reading pleasure in weeks, if not months. But something exciting is around the corner: winter break! Although your school’s winter break may only be a week or two long, you’ll finally have some downtime when you’re free of your teaching duties so you can actually read a book for fun.
It’s hard to believe that we are closing in on the end of another year—and that the start of a new decade is right around the corner!
Topics: education industry
Every teacher, every student, and every classroom has a story to share. Because of this, video has become an invaluable tool in teaching, learning, and digital literacy. It’s estimated that children from ages 8 to 18 spend nearly 7.5 hours each day consuming media of all types, often concurrently. Today’s students have never known a world without video, and it’s estimated that 91% regularly view content on YouTube, so it’s only natural that they would want to use video to support their own learning. Teachers using video in the classroom report that their students retain more information and are more enthusiastic about what they are learning.
Topics: tips for teachers
Immersive learning is a type of learning that incorporates a simulated or artificial learning environment. The learner is able to explore the virtual environment as they would the real world, making immersive learning feel just like the actual learning environment that is being simulated.
This type of learning is incredibly helpful when it comes to replicating real-world scenarios to boost learning experiences, immersing students in a hypothetical situation they may or may not be able to experience in real life. Because of its unique ability to fully engage students visually, mentally, and even physically, immersive learning is becoming more and more popular in the classroom. Teachers are joining in on this growing trend because of the immense impact it has on students, improving their learning experiences and helping to grow their understanding of deep and complex topics.
I realize this subject might make your skin crawl—sometimes we teachers feel like all we do is test, test, test. I recently read an article from USA Today stating that despite all our efforts with Common Core and standardized testing, the US is still lagging behind in test scores. However, I think what’s missing is how to use that data to guide our instruction and how to involve our students with the process.
As the winter testing window begins to open, here are a few tips for your classroom practice:
Topics: classroom assessment
Because of the excessively violent situations that have occurred in schools over the past 20 years, school safety has been a hot-button issue. Many schools have moved to create a more secure environment by controlling access, locking doors, and conducting drills so that students and staff are prepared if something happens. And while all of this is good and necessary to some degree, I believe we must keep the bigger picture in mind as educators
Unfortunately, the concept of being safe must include a discussion of risk. When lawmakers make decisions about things like stoplights, speed limits, and other traffic laws, they consider the possible danger and how that weighs against normal operations on a roadway. For example, we could put a stop sign at every intersection in the country, which would create safe roads, but it would also hinder commerce, travel, and many other endeavors. There must be a balance between safe roads and the purpose of the roads in the first place.
Topics: tips for teachers
Unfortunately, I have seen a number of teachers come and go throughout my 20 years in education. And for every teacher who leaves my school, there's a different reason for why they left. However, I would say that I've seen some patterns in the departures of teachers in terms of both why they left and in the manner in which they departed the school.
And reflecting on this—all of which is based on my observation, not on any research—I believe it might be helpful for school leaders and for the teachers who remain to process the departure of their colleagues. Maybe some of these ideas can help the “professional breakup” to go more smoothly than it sometimes does.
With the holidays upon us, now is a very busy time of the year. It’s also notoriously a time when keeping students on task can be a bit more challenging. Luckily, we’ve got you covered with fun themed content and helpful teaching tips to keep you going right up until the holiday break!
Here is our collection of engaging content to help you keep your students’ attention all month long:
As we prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving this week, it’s a great time to reflect on all of the aspects of the education profession that teachers are thankful for. We took a look back at some of our past blogs and posts from educators to compile this list of what makes teachers feel thankful.
Here are our top 20 reasons why teachers are thankful for teaching:
Topics: tips for teachers