Let Them Play: 6 Ways to Promote Play

*Originally published on Becker’s Insights on Early Learning blog  Play matters! In fact, it’s perhaps the most essential element of children’s learning. Play is crucial to brain development as well as the health and well-being of early learners. It fosters physical, emotional, social, and cognitive skills while cultivating creativity and...

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Parent Partnerships: Volunteers for Learning

Parent partnerships are crucial! Creating a variety of opportunities for parents to volunteer throughout the year can truly change the dynamic of the classroom for the better. Rather than using parent volunteers for standard organizational tasks only, integrate opportunities for them to truly support instruction. They can provide the additional...

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Channeling Maslow: A Day in THAT Child’s Life

This blog post can also be read/reflected upon individually or used as a visualizing activity during professional learning. For professional learning, have participants pair up and stand back to back with their eyes closed. Then, read this aloud to them. Afterward, have them face their partner and reflect upon...

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A Dozen Do’s for Student Teachers

It wasn’t that long ago when I was a wide-eyed, eager-to-learn student teacher. I remember those couple of months that I jokingly referred to as “free labor” to be challenging, enlightening, and rewarding. That quick snapshot in time undoubtedly laid the foundation for my first full-time position to follow....

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Teaching Inclusion Taught ME

Don’t stare. Keep your heads down. Eyes forward. My elementary school teachers, all of whom I loved and respected, uttered these kinds of things in the hallways whenever we passed THAT group of students, the ones who looked, sounded, or perhaps acted just a bit differently than my classmates...

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Instead of “NO”, Let’s Try…

NO!  STOP!  DON’T! Students hate to hear it. Teachers wish they didn’t have to say it. But, do negative words such as these really even work? And, when does “no” lose its luster? I’m reminded of just how much disciplinarians overuse these words at the start of each school year...

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EdCamp: Honoring Voice and Choice

Have you ever participated in an EdCamp? I’ve participated in and facilitated several and just can’t say enough about what a valuable professional learning model Edcamps are for educators, especially classroom teachers. If you like personalized learning experiences and engaging in authentic dialogue with other passionate educators, keep on reading! What...

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13 Animal Videos for PreK-3 Students

Animals are an essential part of the science curriculum. Here is a collection of 18 instructional animal videos and songs for PreK-3 learners, covering topics such as habitats, body coverings, methods of movement, food chains, hibernation, migration, and more! These clips are both educational and entertaining. I hope you find strategic...

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