January 2011 - Minds in Bloom

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Making the Most of Student Presentations

At its worst, a student presentation is a nervous, unprepared student  reading note cards to the class in a barely audible voice. No one wants that. But with a little guidance, that same kid can create an interesting, dynamic presentation that will not only hold every one’s attention, but actually teach them something.Here are some ideas for improving your students’ presentations: Groups are Good A

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What Would You Do to Change the World?

What’s more, we are the first nation to be founded for the sake of an idea — the idea that each of us deserves the chance to shape our own destiny. That is why centuries of pioneers and immigrants have risked everything to come here. It’s why our students don’t just memorize equations, but answer questions like “What do you think of that idea? What

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Should I Use a Graphic Organizer?

You can get the two Graphic Organizers pictured in this post plus one more for free here. The graphic organizer pictured to the right could easily be made into a question and answer worksheet format. The assignment would be fine, but the graphic organizer is a much more appealing and possibly more appropriate format. You probably use graphic organizers with your students all of the

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New Years resolutions are sometimes a sore subject, but they can be helpful if planned and executed carefully. As you head into another new year in your classroom, consider these three New Years resolutions for teachers--and take it easy on yourself!

3 New Years Resolutions for Teachers

Here we are in a brand new year…with the same old challenges. The same kids that drive you crazy and the same administrators that may also be driving you crazy. Too little time, too much to do, and so on and so on. So, here are three New Years resolutions to help you and your students make it to June. Resolution #1: Try something new

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Students love choice, and what better way to give them that power than with Tic-Tac-Toe Choice Grids? They still have to work, but it's their choice!

Get Three in a Row with Tic-Tac-Toe Choice Grids!

One of my mentors from my early teaching days said that we should strive to give students “freedom within structure.” Tic-Tac-Toe Choice Grids are one excellent way to do that. To make a Tic-Tac-Toe Choice Grid, simply put nine more or less equal projects, assignments, or activities into a 3×3 grid. Students must then choose three of the projects to complete. However, just like in

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Saying "thank you" can be more exciting and personalized than writing a simple note. Read this list for thank you note ideas that includes crafts, multi-media, and other creative ideas!

10 Fun and Creative Thank You Note Ideas

Writing thank you notes for holiday gifts doesn’t have to be a chore. Here are 10 creative thank you note ideas to help make writing thank yous fun! Make thank you notes into an art project: Get out the crayons, the glitter, and the glue. Have your child make a picture (ideally incorporating the gift), and then write a note underneath or on the back.

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