High School Dropouts and Middle School

This is a fantastic video from Frontline about how a student’s middle school experience–even in sixth grade–can predict whether or not that child will drop out of high school: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/education/dropout-nation/middle-school-moment/ The video states that if a sixth-grade student in a high-poverty school is present less than 80 percent of the time, fails math or English,…

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Bulletin Board Bar Graph

A bulletin board bar graph is the perfect tool to bring together data and discussion–and it can be as simple (read: quick) or complicated (read: time-consuming) as you desire to make it. PERSONALIZE YOUR CLASS VOCABULARY LISTS I use bulletin board bar graphs within the framework of Comprehension Based language teaching. One of the reasons…

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El día terrible, horrible, espantoso, horroroso

This activity has several inspirations: Sarah Camblin, the French teacher at my school–her students are using this format to write about the frequency with which they do different activities in each season. Michele/Jenny and the story about waking up on the wrong side of the bed. The book “Alexander y el día terrible, horrible, espantoso,…

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Literacy Night, Take 1

Our school is holding a “Literacy Night” on Friday evening. The goal of the evening is to provide fun, literacy-based enrichment activities for our students and their families. It will be running alongside our 6th Grade Orientation, which (as an Elective teacher) is my opportunity to recruit new students for my program. My challenge was…

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Story Elements Glove

Here is a fun idea that I learned at a ‘Stellar Strategies‘ workshop with Liz Warner several years ago here in Anchorage. It was a great workshop, and I walked away with many ready-to-use strategies for teaching vocabulary and language in general. THE STORY ELEMENTS GLOVE The Story Elements Glove was one easy-to-implement strategy that…

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Same and Different

This is a great reading activity that will give students experience with ‘testing vocabulary’ and require them to use higher levels of thinking. You could also use it as a listening activity, but you’d probably want to have done it with a reading first since the immediacy of listening would make it more challenging. Begin…

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