Marypat

organize classroom ideas

Nine Ways to Organize Your Classroom

This is going to be the year, right?  The year you are really, really going to get organized!  No more paper stacks, lost copies, or overflowing file folders.  No more wondering where those thirty glue sticks are or if there are enough colored pencils! This is the year, and these inspiration ideas can help you […] Read more…

5 classic novels that middle school students will actually want to read!

5 Classic Books for Middle Schoolers

What’s a “classic” piece of literature?  Mark Twain defined it as “something that everybody wants to have read and nobody wants to read.” Those words might ring true when you sit down to read War and Peace  or Moby Dick, but what about middle school classics? Modern Classics in Middle School A classic includes enduring themes, relatable characters, […] Read more…

5 terrific historical fiction books for middle schoolers -- and how to get them to read 'em!

5 Historical Fiction Titles for Middle Schoolers

How do you use historical fiction? If you’re in a self-contained classroom, using historical fiction is a natural connection with your social studies content.  It is an awesome way to build background knowledge and help students make strong connections. But what about me? I don’t teach social studies.  I do know what our social studies […] Read more…

Here are 5 book series that are sure to be a hit with your middle schoolers

5 Series With Characters Your Students will Love

Hey!  Happy to see you at this week’s Summer Reading Stash!  Today we’re sharing books in a series that have memorable characters.  But the real challenge is to pick just five series!  A difficult task since there are so many wonderful series written for middle schoolers. Teachers know series are serious Series are important business when […] Read more…

How to get middle school students interested in nonfiction.

Nonfiction for Middle School

I’m excited to join in the Summer Reading Stash blog hop this week  — especially since we are talking about  using nonfiction in the intermediate and middle school classroom. We all know the issues with middle school and reading.  Weaknesses in reading skills can take a toll on student achievement as we ask and expect […] Read more…

What are some of the best ways to create an awesome teaching team? Here are seven tips to help you and your team collaborate and thrive. Don't forget number 4!

7 Tips for Creating a Dream Teaching Team

Teaching teams are wonderful.  They offer an opportunity for teachers to collaborate, share, problem-solve, and create friendships that extend beyond the school building. That’s the theory, anyway.  They can also be dysfunctional, negative, ineffective, and destructive.  The truth is that great teaching teams just don’t happen — they must be intentionally created and nurtured. Whether […] Read more…

Get your students excited about research with these seven steps.

How to Get Your Students Excited about Research

              Research should be fun!  Yet it often involves restricted topics, rules, and requirements that can limit a student’s natural curiosity and enthusiasm.  Encourage students to follow their questions by implementing simple, small research activities about topics they are curious about. Go Old School:  Use Research Notebooks I loved […] Read more…

Upcycle school supplies to create a fun notebook or journal.

Year-End Project: Upcycled Notebooks

The end of the school year or semester is wonderful and exciting …except for the waste. Rather than having students chunk their partially used notebooks into the recycling bin, have them upcycle them by creating new notebooks.  Students can create their own reading journals! Earth Day was just a few weeks ago, so students just […] Read more…

Host a Teach-In to Celebrate Earth Day!

Host a Teach-In for Earth Day

Earth Day ♥ Earth Day is a wonderful celebration, and perhaps your school is extending activities for more than one day.  But, we all want every day to be Earth Day!  That’s why extending Earth Day into a “teach-in” is a great way to end the year. What’s a Teach-In…Sounds Hippy-ish Get out your love beads, […] Read more…

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