October 2014 - Minds in Bloom

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Put the ball in students' court by teaching and guiding them in setting their own learning goals. Their progress and sense of ownership will amaze them!

Teach Your Students to Set Their Own Learning Goals and Boost Learning

Minds in Bloom is happy to present Jen Bradshaw, the author of TeacherKarma, with her inspiring and informative post. We know you’ll find it useful!   Boost learning by teaching students to set their own goals. For the past six years, I have had the opportunity to be a Literacy Coach and RtI (Response to Intervention) Specialist on a kindergarten through fifth grade elementary campus.

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Have you heard of the CHAMPS system for classroom management? This is a great tool for elementary classrooms, and it's a useful way to teach students your classroom expectations. Our guest blogger shares information about what CHAMPS is and how it works in her classroom and school. Click through to read all of the details!

Introduction to CHAMPS

Minds in Bloom presents Literacy without Worksheets with her post on classroom management. Enjoy! Classroom management can be one of the most challenging aspects of teaching.  As teaching becomes more stressful with increased accountability standards and high-stakes testing, a well-managed classroom is key to maximizing student learning opportunities.  The more time teachers have to spend correcting behaviors and getting students’ attention, the less time students have to learn (and this leads

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The Importance of Shared Learning

Let’s all give a warm welcome to Rebecca Valera. Thanks for sharing this valuable post Rebecca!     I am thrilled to talk to you today about something that I’m really passionate about, which is shared learning. Our current culture is all about sharing (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Blogging, etc.). When students share what they have learned it sticks, and completes the learning process for that

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Books that make kids want to write DO exist! Many kids miss the connection between reading and writing, which is an essential connection and understanding for them to have in their education. Our guest blogger shares five books that make kids want to write in this post. Your kids will be chomping at the bit to write after reading these books, too!

Books that Make Kids WANT to Write

Minds in Bloom is excited to present Heather Earley with her inspiring guest post on making kids WANT to write. She’s got lots of great book suggestions. You’re bound to find a new favorite!   My addiction to books has been a long and expensive habit!  However, I was never much of a writer in school and dreaded “creative” writing assignments.  I was missing the

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Incorporating STEM into your instruction isn't as challenging as it might seem. Our guest bloggers, who founded Get Caught Engineering, share several ways that STEM can be incorporated into English Language Arts in particular. There are some fun ideas shared, so check them out and add a comment with your thoughts on their suggestions!

STEM-i-fying the Classroom: Finding Room on Your Plate for Engineering

Minds in Bloom is happy to present Wendy Goldfein and Cheryl Nelson of Get Caught Engineering, an integrated hands-on engineering program, with their post on finding room in your classroom for Engineering. Enjoy! When we first decided to develop an engineering program for our school, our administrator was very supportive. However, he only had one request: “Please don’t tick off the staff!” We knew that

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Integrating art across the curriculum doesn't have to be hard! Our guest blogger shares a variety of ways that art can be integrated into all content areas. Click through to learn more about incorporating art into English language arts, reading, writing, math, science, and social studies.

Integrating Art Across the Curriculum

Minds in Bloom presents Renée Goularte, a former art-instructor, a working artist, and a writer, with her post on integrating art into your curriculum.   If you are a teacher, chances are you’ve said it: “We have no time for art.” Chances are equally good that you believe that art is important.  It is…and it’s worth making time for! Because you know what? Art education is important in and of

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Mastery of the Common Core State Standards is possible, even though they often seem confusing and overwhelming. Our guest blogger goes into detail on how to master a standard, using an RL standard from CCSS as a model. She describes how she shifted her instruction in order to make sure she taught each standard, and we know you'll find this post helpful in getting a handle on the Common Core!

Mastery of the Common Core State Standards

Minds in Bloom presents Brenda of Teaching…Seriously with this post jam-packed with information on Common Core standards mastery!     Sprinkling standards into my existing literature program just didn’t work. Then realization struck. My students needed direct instruction, modeling, guided practice, and independent practice for each standard. This required a paradigm shift. Instead of teaching multiple standards with each story, I had to use multiple

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Two-footed Questions for Whole Brain Adventures

Minds-in-Bloom is excited to present Dr. Ellen Weber’s post on developing both brain hemispheres! Imagine wooing your students into the high arctic for an afternoon sledding adventure they’ll both relish and remember. Two-footed questions such as, What if you led your dog team to an outpost camp? trigger adventures for many different learners. How does it work? Students leap to questions that integrate their right

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One of the most important tasks for teachers of at-risk students is improving their self-esteem. When at-risk students don't believe in their own potential, they're less likely to be successful. This post outlines eight tips to help teachers foster self-esteem in at-risk students.

Improving the Self-Esteem of At-Risk Students

Creative Expressions was co-founded by two sisters about one-and-a-half years ago.  They produce bilingual products for teachers in the fields of English, Spanish, ESL, and math.   Their article about enhancing self-esteem of at-risk students validates their belief that all students can learn under the right circumstances. We have too many students who are at risk, and as teachers we need to help them improve their self-esteem whenever possible.  Sometimes, we just

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Reading comprehension for ESL students is critically important due to the language barriers these students have. This post outlines five hands-on reading comprehension strategies that will help your students grow their reading comprehension skills.

5 Hands-on Strategies to Teach Reading Comprehension for ESL Students

Minds in Bloom presents Yara of Sea of Knowledge with her post on reading comprehension for ESL students. We hope you’ll enjoy it!   Reading skills are essential at any stage, but for ESL students this skill can be quite challenging, especially when teachers have a mixture of levels in their classes. My class in particular has about five ESL students of a lower intermediate

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Teaching heredity in elementary school might seem too early, but with fun and easy activities like this one, it's no problem at all! Our guest blogger shares a meaningful and fun activity - with materials that you can use again in the future! - for teaching heredity in elementary school. Click through to get the activity.

Teaching Heredity in Elementary School

Minds in Bloom is pleased to present Bethany Lau with her post on teaching heredity. We think you’ll enjoy it! Science in elementary school should be all about fun.  In fact, science at all levels of school should be about curiosity, exploration, and lots of fun!  As more and more states adopt the Next Generation Science Standards (and as other states adopt their own similar

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