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Bring Poetry Alive with these Digital Lessons

The recent work of Amanda Gorman has re-inspired the education community to focus on poetry instruction. April is National Poetry Month, but there is a place in the curriculum all year long for this important genre. In Dead Poet’s Society, we ponder, “what will your verse be?” TEN BENEFITS OF TEACHING POETRY (list created by Sarah Landis) Poetry often illuminates the author’s voice, and so shines a light on inner expression! (Think Langston Hughes to Jason Rey...

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Need Some Fresh Inspiration? We’ve Got You Covered!

GET INSPIRED! This is typically my favorite time of year to teach. I’ve covered most of my standards, I know my students so well by now, and what drives them! And, Spring is in the air -- which means that fresh ideas are blooming! Creativity abounds! This year feels different. Since the last year of pandemic schooling you may be feeling like you’ve exhausted most of your good ideas and need a re-fresh! We have curated some of our favorite things to spark or re-ignite your inne...

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What the Research Says and Why HyperDocs Work: Featured Interviews!

This blog explores two related topics near and dear to our HyperDoc hearts -- what research is saying about HyperDocs instruction, and why HyperDocs work. Hint: They are based on brain-based learning studies! WHAT THE RESEARCH SAYS We had a chance to connect with Jeff Carpenter recently, who is part of a team including Tim Green and Torrey Trust. Through three separate universities, they worked together to conduct an exploratory study on teaching with HyperDocs. Watch the interview to hea...

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Valentine HyperDocs because We Love Educators

5 Ways to Show Yourself Some Love this Month You have single-handedly kept the education system afloat in the last year -- working tirelessly to check in on students, learn new webtools, re-engage learners over and over, adjust with changing norms, and redesign your lessons. Phew. Take that in. No wonder you’re exhausted! We love educators for their ability to stay flexible and relevant, adapt and create within the confines of pandemic schooling. Here are five simple ways you can show you...

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Teaching Social Justice is More than One Lesson

On January 6, 2021 there was a historical event that took place at the nation's capitol. Trump supporters stormed the Capitol building in Washington, DC. Five people died. Senators were forced to shelter in place. The insurrection has left many wondering how and why the rioters were able to enter the building. Learn more here. Teachers around the country have been grappling with how to approach the conversation with students. Many have put aside their pre-planned lessons to address stude...

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New Year Lessons to Promote Reflection

It’s a new calendar year! Same students, many of the same pandemic struggles, but also a new beginning in many ways. I remember I used to say to my 5th graders during our January return to school, “Welcome back future 6th graders, this is the year you will become a middle schooler. I know you will blow me away with a new found maturity. And what fun we'll have challenging ourselves this second half of the school year.” Then we would reflect on our vacation as a community an...

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Change is Hard

I think it goes without saying that this year, more than most, we teachers have been asked quite a lot from our communities, schools, and/or jobs. Without exhausting a list of every additional change to our practice this year, I can safely say that every teacher has made edits to their written and taught curriculum. Some perhaps have cut giant chunks with a sigh saying, “Maybe next year...” It is easy to think about all the fun projects and cool field trips we’ve lost and get a...

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Looking Back: 2020 Reflections

Educators are always learning and adapting. It is what we do. It is what we believe in - personal growth. We meet students where they are, scaffold, encourage, re-teach, and extend learning. We believe that every individual has the potential to learn new things. Ironically, that is exactly what this year was -- for us -- the educators! With our profession turned inside out, we became the learners! Here are two key take-aways I observed in 2020 in regards to our own adult learning. First...

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Make Meaning of the Holidays: Lesson Design that Matters

In this blog and video, we share some of our favorite ways to bring meaning to December/January lesson planning. Watch/listen in as we each open up about the decision making process that goes into curating and creating a HyperDoc. KELLY SHARES HER DESIGN PROCESS There are so many great holiday resources out there. But finding the ‘right’ ones can be exciting! We recently stumbled upon this lesson pack from Teaching Tolerance titled, Analyzing the School Holiday Calendar, f...

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Media and Its Impact on Social Emotional Learning

We connected with Darren Hudgins, educator/author/CEO. He even considers himself and educators as "social servants." Darren Hudgins moved me to think differently right away -- even in his introduction! It really struck me that how we introduce ourselves to others is a critical part of our identity. He wears many hats, or titles, that draw us into his work. His book, Fact vs. Fiction provides educators with tools and resources to help students discern fact from fiction in the informatio...

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