Gretchen Schroeder taps into the connections between characters by creating sociograms with her high school students.
Leigh Anne Eck provides a guide to developing an End-of-Year Reflection for students to consider their own growth, as well as offer advice regarding curriculum and instruction.
Gretchen Schroeder makes the leap to digital notebooks and finds new life in a tried-and-true practice.
Christy Rush-Levine offers a close look into the needs of readers by considering engagement, enrichment and nourishment. She offers three examples of reading conferences with students.
Shari Frost shares her favorite graphic novel adaptations for the middle grades.
Christy Rush-Levine faces the challenge of helping her students see summary writing not as drudgery, but as a way to build more sophisticated thinking around texts.
Melissa Quimby shares online routines to strengthen the class reading community.
Kate Mills and Tara Barnett pinpoint common difficulties in sixth-grade memoir. They share teaching points and student writing samples before and after revision.
Christy Rush-Levine considers how to communicate to all students that their presence and their identities are valued and appreciated.
Mark Levine finds humor is the “secret sauce” in engaging middle school students and including introverts in the classroom community.
Mark Levine explains the many ways read alouds can enhance and deepen learning for middle school students in content areas like social studies and science.
What makes choice authentic in literacy workshops? Christy Rush-Levine grapples with this tough question that leads to changes in her instruction.
Christy Rush-Levine discovers that a move to digital feedback reveals many important truths about her middle school students, including insights about the effect of grades on how learners view response to their work.
Christy Rush-Levine lowers the tension level in her class over management issues by moving from irritation to curiosity, using her “inner chimpanzee” voice.
What’s the difference between a lesson and a minilesson? Christy Rush-Levine finds that flexibility is just as important as length in making minilessons work well.
Tara Barnett and Kate Mills explain how they use examples from YA authors of how to mine everyday life for powerful ideas. They then help students move from ideas to blurbs as they start their realistic fiction drafts.
Mark Levine has many students who haven’t traveled much more than 100 miles from home. He makes history come to life for them by bringing artifacts into his middle school classroom.
Tammy Mulligan shares how she introduces students to the process of interpreting literature at different grade and developmental levels.
Christy Rush-Levine shares the strategies she uses to help her middle school students take ownership of their literary analysis essays.
Tara Barnett and Kate Mills share the power of teaching writer’s craft in bite-sized chunks, through careful study of mentor sentences in read alouds.
Tara Barnett and Kate Mills find that they have to change the way they think about connecting with families once students reach middle school.
Mark Levine wonders why his most some of his most skilled readers take the most time to get through texts. So he asks them, and gets some fascinating answers he uses to assist struggling students.
Christy Rush-Levine ponders what it means to create a safe space for all of her middle school students, and then makes some changes.
Tara Barnett and Kate Mills introduce their middle school students to pastiche, a technique of mimicking the craft of favorite poems and poets.
Middle schoolers and kindergartners forge friendships at Katherine Sokolowski’s school through a sweet poetry writing and sharing project.
Christy Rush-Levine finds her middle school students need more support and scaffolds to understand authors’ craft in graphic novels.
Mark Levine has his middle school students “closely read” paired videos as well as texts to ponder the value and accuracy of different historical sources.
Jeff is apathetic and unengaged. To help this middle school learner, Mark Levine needs to understand his history. Mark shows the power of interviews for connecting with struggling teen learners.
Mark Levine realizes explaining expectations for an essay assignment over and over again isn’t working. But when he has students write in pairs for a portion of his workshop, magic happens.
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