Some of the most salient and lasting experiences for students come from stepping outside of the classroom and into another, more immersive learning space.
Children construct reality based on their perceptions and memories. Neuro-Linguistic Programming, NLP, defines our sensory channels as “representational” systems, or how a child “represents” or make sense of external surroundings. More importantly, the meaning of the communication is the response it elicits.
June is National Hunger Awareness Month, and while we in America undoubtedly have a hunger issue of our own, in today’s blog we are going to look at world hunger and what we can do as classroom teachers to allow our students to actively make a difference the lives of those around the world.
When to start second language learning? Although experts have attested that introduction to a second language increases proficiency, studies suggest that the most efficient time to begin to learn a second language is anytime between first grade through middle school.
Entering it's twelfth year of existence, Caribbean American Heritage Month recognizes and celebrates the culture, history, natural beauty, and diversity of the nations connected to the Caribbean Sea (save the Bahamas, Bermuda, and Turks and Caicos Islands, which call the Atlantic Ocean home). Today's Caribbean nations, though shaped initially by the transatlantic slave trade and European colonialism intermingling with the native cultures, each have its own flair and significant historical contribution to what makes this region truly unique. This year, I want to highlight some ways you can celebrate this heritage month with your class or as a family, learning loads of new information along the way.
My son's first word was "Fish", because I brought him to my classroom after school got out for the summer, and he was entranced with the fish tank. As a teacher, I was excited to spend more time with my family and relax over vacation, but I was also a new teacher and wanted to be as prepared as I could for the next year. I was organizing, prepping, brainstorming.....so much that my baby started talking to the classroom wildlife!
As part of my Good vs Great Teacher series, this week we will focus on Professional Development. ALL great teachers are teachable! Being teachable includes professional development and learning new things that help teachers become more effective. Remember our acronym from last week? GREAT stands for
For young students, a book is always an entertaining and effective way to introduce a topic. Stars and Stripes: The Story of the American Flag by Bob Dacey is perfect for children in grades 1–4. They will enjoy learning how the American flag came to be. This book tells how the flag has undergone many changes throughout the years. Another is F is for Flag by Wendy Cheyette Lewison, – this book reminds young children of the importance of the American flag in our society and how the stars and stripes symbolizes many things, and serves to unite us all! A question that arises among many classroom settings is who made the flag? Who Was Betsy Ross? By James Buckley this book tells about the patriotic seamstress who helped to create it! A great biography for for elementary classrooms. A great book to follow the American flag, would be Primary Explorers: Flags of the World by Sylvie Bednar. Kids will learn about the flags of other countries. They will be able to explore how many countries have flags with blue on them? Which country has a flag with a red leaf? Which flag has a red star? This book shows the flag of every country in the world, as well as flags used in signaling, sports and by long-ago pirates. Find out what flags mean, where they come from and how they are used.
To build from the knowledge the children have gained, they could each create a flag that would represent their family. They could write about what the colors mean and the picture or symbol they’ve used. This is a great way to get to know your students and a bit about their families at the beginning of the school year. Another idea is for the students to create a class flag that represents their school/classroom. Again they would write and share with the class why they choose the colors and symbols. To make it more interesting, the kids could vote to adopt one of the flags for their classroom. Together you could make a pledge to say along with your flag, including school rules, etiquette, respect and kindness. I know this is something that I will do at the beginning of my school year in September! I will probably connect it with our 9-11 remembrance.
Regardless how or when you introduce our American flag, just be sure to do it. I believe it is important to instill in our students what our flag represents and all those who have fought to protect it. Happy Flag Day!