classroom tool

classroom tools

Essential Tools for your Classroom

Do you have the classroom tools that you need to streamline teaching, organize papers, and keep you and your students focused on content? Here are some best bets for classroom organization This post includes affiliate links. You can read more here. Affiliate links help me fund my blog, but at no additional cost to you! […] Read more…

Here are 6 strategies for grouping students. Perfect flexible grouping methods for differentiation, projects, and team building activities.

Grouping Students – Strategies that Work

No matter how entertaining you are, your students still need to move around and talk during class. Here are some great ways to get students moving, talking, problem solving, and interacting with different classmates. What’s the perfect size for grouping students? Students often struggle in groups. One student make take over and do all the […] Read more…

Use diagnostic writing assessments to improve your classroom instruction. Click through to discover how, and download a free writing assessment tool.

Writing Assessments & how to use them

The best way to learn about your student writers is to perform a diagnostic writing assessment.  This can help you analyze what your students need and determine your instructional strategies. When you get a batch of new students, you need to get to know them as human beings, but also as students — and more […] Read more…

How to improve peer reviews

9 Ways to Improve Student Peer Reviews

Peer reviews are beneficial to the reviewer and reviewee alike. Students benefit most from peer reviews when a few things are set in place. When one of my teaching friends noticed I was using peer reviews in my classroom, she commented that she never used them.  Why?  “It’s like the blind leading the blind,” she […] Read more…

How to create a yearlong plan

How to create a yearlong plan to teach (all the) writing

A yearlong plan will help you teach (all the) writing; it will save you time and energy — and help you remain accountable for what you’re expected to teach this year. What is a yearlong plan? A yearlong plan is an overview of what you’ll be teaching all year. Depending on how your school works, […] Read more…

teach characterization using short fun pixar films

Teaching Characterization with Short Films

Teach characterization using short films that will keep your students engaged in learning! Short films like Pixar shorts are perfect for this lesson — and students love them! Students get hooked into the lesson right away! How do you teach it? Let’s dive in: But first… What is characterization? Characterization refers to the way a […] Read more…

First Day of School – Fun and Games

The first day of school is full of organizing, paper passing, and expectations.  While kids are happy to reconnect with friends, the business of the first day can be draining.  That’s why playing a game on the first day is a great way to engage students. I play Scattergories throughout the year with my class […] Read more…