“I don’t understand how to ask a story.”

You’ve got a new comprehension-based curriculum, and you’d be 100% sold if it weren’t for that storyasking part. You’ve got a script, but what the heck do you do with it? Many teachers have asked the same question before. Storyasking is an invented word meant to differentiate creating a story from telling a story. If you’ve…

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10 ways to talk with your students about their weekend

When I first ditched the textbook, Weekend Chats was one of the very first routines that I learned about and started using in class. I was introduced to it by Michele Whaley, and I remember reading about it on Ben Slavic’s blog soon thereafter. I used Ben’s idea of having students illustrate posters of places…

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How to write comprehensible texts

Once I moved away from using the textbook as the center of my curriculum, I was free to bring in all kinds of new texts. Popular songs, novels written for language learners, picture books, short non-fiction readings prepared by me, infographics, edited stories written by my students or co-created by the class, and more. By…

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Organization schmorganization

When I first started teaching, all of my files were paper and I organized them in hanging file folders. Eventually, I graduated to beautiful binders filled with page-protected worksheets separated with colorful dividers for each unit. As I began to gather more and more materials from the Internet (blog posts, videos, lesson plans, images, etc.),…

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