March 2015 - Minds in Bloom

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Literature circles are an extremely effective instructional method when they're implemented correctly. However, many teachers find them to be daunting because they do require quite a bit of upfront work. Once you get the literature circles in motion, though, they provide an excellent means for students to read, build comprehension, discuss, listen, and more!

Don’t Be Scared Off by Literature Circles!

Today’s guest blogger is Marcy from It’s a Teacher Thing. Marcy has shared with us five tips for effectively running literature circles in your classroom. Read on to learn more!   Don’t be scared off by literature circles (book clubs). They just take a little time and organization. I attempted my first session of literature circles more than nine years ago. I really didn’t know what I was getting myself into,

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Close reading has become a widely popular instructional technique in classrooms all around the world, and apps often help make instruction easier and smoother. Therefore, we're confident that you'll love this guest post about five apps that support close reading - five apps to make your life easier and to support such a strong teaching method! Close reading has never been easier with the help of these apps.

5 Apps to Support Close Reading

I’m Erin from Technology Erin*tegration. I am excited to share my technology twist on close reading using iPads. Thanks for having me, Rachel!   Just as there are many models for close reading, there are a multitude of apps that will support your students in digging deeper into a text. I am sharing my five favorite free apps for annotating and note taking on the

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Are you trying to figure out how to make research enjoyable and maybe even fun (gasp!) for kids? Our guest blogger is a teacher-turned-librarian, and she's sharing six secrets to successful research with kids in this post. Click through to read more!

6 Secrets to Successful Research with Kids

Research, the very word, can draw shudders from teachers and audible sighs from students. If you are one of those shuddering educators dreading that next research project, then you are truly going about research all wrong. Take it from this elementary school librarian! I have been an elementary educator for twenty years and a certified library media specialist for the last seven years. I am

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Departmentalizing is old news in some schools and a new classroom approach in others. Our guest blogger shares her story of how her team started departmentalizing classes and the success they had in doing so.

Trying a New Classroom Approach

How excited am I to be here!? I am Melanie from Momma with a Teaching Mission. I am a first grade teacher in Maryland. I teach on a departmentalized team. Departmentalized means teaching one subject to the entire grade level, instead of teaching multiple subjects to the same group of 20 kids. Are you a stressed out elementary school teacher? OF COURSE YOU ARE! Who

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Effective collaboration between the teacher and speech-language pathologist is not only helpful for both parties, but it's also essential for students' success in school. Our guest blogger shares many tips for effective collaboration between the teacher and speech-language pathologist in this blog post.

The Teacher and the Speech-Language Pathologist: Tips for Effective Collaboration

We’re thrilled to welcome Maureen from The Speech Bubble SLP to Minds in Bloom today! Maureen has a wonderful guest post all about effective collaboration between the teacher and speech-language pathologist. Enjoy! These days, you will find at least one child in every classroom that receives speech and language services of some sort. This means that you, as the teacher, will probably have some type

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The Power of Rewards and Incentives in Reading Instruction

Say hello to Jessica Sanders, the Director of Social Outreach for Learn2Earn and our fabulous guest for the day! It’s called extrinsic motivation—being motivated to read, or do anything, based on outside factors such as money or rewards. Extrinsic motivation is evoked when students are incentivized to read more and this is a hot topic in the education world. Many people who are against using a reward system or incentives have

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36 Awesome Test Prep Review Ideas!

It’s time to review what you’ve been working on all year long for those oh-so-important standardized tests. But don’t despair, test review doesn’t have to be dull. There are plenty of ways to make it fun! Here are 36 of them:   Use QR Codes. Find out how from Stephanie at Math Teacher Time Out. Ask the whole class or a small group a question

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Making classroom videos can be an incredible way to build community in your classroom. Take learning to a new level by using these 10 tips to make a meaningful classroom video.

10 Tips to Make a Meaningful Classroom Video

Hi, Everyone! I’m Lessia from I am Bullyproof Music. Thanks so much to Rachel Lynette for inviting me back. Such an honor! Here’s hoping my tips inspire one and all.   Teachers frame ideas for students daily. Videography is a natural next step. By making lessons visual and personal, we can make them truly memorable. Biggest piece of advice: Don’t sweat the small stuff. Focus on hearts and minds.  

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Check out these five fun, unique ways to get students engaged in reading aloud in your classroom. Kids will love the way these methods change up the classroom routine, build suspense, and make reading fun!

5 Fun Ways to get Students Engaged in Reading Aloud

Hi everyone! I’m Mary Beth from Brain Waves Instruction, and I’m so happy to be sharing ideas with you all today.  Rachel, thanks for letting me stop by!   Like most teachers, I’m constantly on the hunt for engaging ways to help students become more confident, effective, and critical readers.  Sometimes, I even go “old-school” and have my students read passages out loud in class…but reading

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