Most Clicked MiddleWeb SmartBrief Stories


1. 6 educators offer positive classroom-management strategies

MiddleWeb SmartBrief | Jan 20, 2015

Giving students a voice in how the classroom functions, such as having them create a set of rules and expectations, improves their engagement and behavior in class, middle-grades educator Pernille Ripp writes in this blog post. Ripp and five other educators share tips on positive classroom management in this post on Larry Ferlazzo's blog. Education Week Teacher (tiered subscription model) (01/16)


2. Using snow to teach science and math

MiddleWeb SmartBrief | Jan 22, 2015

Educators can use students' interest in snow to engage them in lessons on science and math, fourth-grade teacher Lindsey Petlak suggests in this blog post. She offers links to resources and describes projects that include graphing and analyzing the possible targets in a fake classroom snowball fight to studying symmetry by creating snowflakes. Scholastic.com (01/21)


3. Ideas to help new teachers to reflect on their practice

MiddleWeb SmartBrief | Jan 23, 2015

The New Year offers new teachers time to reflect on and retool some of their teaching practices that may or may not have worked earlier in the school year, instructional mentor Stacy Davison writes in this blog post. She offers 10 ideas for implementing a reset, including replacing classroom routines that aren't working and focusing on closure for lessons. Teaching Channel (01/22)


4. Educator: Students benefit from movement-based lessons

MiddleWeb SmartBrief | Jan 20, 2015

Recess and free play are important parts of the school day, but educators also should integrate more movement into classroom lessons, Aleta Margolis, founder and executive director of the Center for Inspired Teaching, writes in this blog post. She describes several ways teachers can incorporate movement-based activities into their lessons. Washington Post (tiered subscription model), The (01/19)


5. The 8 essentials of good student feedback

MiddleWeb SmartBrief | Jan 22, 2015

Whether you provide it orally or in written form -- in a sit-down meeting or during a busy classroom activity -- quality feedback is crucial for students to continuously improve their work. Author and consultant Barbara Blackburn summarizes eight characteristics of good feedback that she believes "are essential practices for effective teaching." Read more.


6. 5 ways to help students set their own learning goals

MiddleWeb SmartBrief | Jan 20, 2015

New Year's resolutions about teaching and learning are too limiting and ultimately frustrating, says co-teaching coach Elizabeth Stein. Teachers can help students create and pursue goals all year long, using five strategies Stein recommends to grow more self-reliance and insure progress. Read more.


7. Word-rich classrooms help students learn academic vocabulary

MiddleWeb SmartBrief | Jan 20, 2015

Students can learn difficult vocabulary in classrooms where they are immersed in a rich array of words and meanings, says reading expert Janet Allen. In this excerpt from her spiral-bound book, "Tools for Teaching Academic Vocabulary," Allen describes a variety of ways to create such a word-rich environment. Included: reproducibles and other helpful resources. Read more.


8. Methods some districts use to address chronic absences

MiddleWeb SmartBrief | Jan 20, 2015

School districts nationwide are taking steps to curb truancy and keep youths out of the juvenile-justice system. Steps include additional monitoring of absences, early interventions and providing social services. District Administration magazine online (01/19)


9. Review: A middle-school classic returns, even better

MiddleWeb SmartBrief | Jan 23, 2015

Even if you think you know all there is to know about middle-schoolers, raves teacher-reviewer Beth Morrow, you are bound to learn something new about their thinking and behavior after you finish reading the third edition of "What Every Middle School Teacher Should Know" by Dave F. Brown and Trudy Knowles. Read more.


10. Why teachers should partner with librarians for inquiry-based learning

MiddleWeb SmartBrief | Jan 22, 2015

School librarians can help educators make the transition to inquiry-based learning, said Paige Jaeger, a school librarian turned administrator and co-author of "Think Tank Library: Brain-Based Learning Plans for New Standards." "This is so new for teachers, whereas librarians have been doing this for ten years," she said. KQED.org (01/19)




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