Learn a few new methods for employing creative and critical thinking in your class. Despite a focus on reading, these can be used in any content area!

Creative and Critical Thinking

My name is Hillary Kiser, and I have been teaching for seven years now. Rachel was so sweet to allow me to be a guest on her blog and talk about Creative and Critical Thinking. Thank you, Rachel! I hope you all enjoy this post and learn a few things about incorporating creative and critical thinking in your classroom! Teaching children to think sounds easy…but

Cooking in the classroom is a fun--but often messy--activity that you can do to integrate all content areas. Of course, reading is integrated, but you can also teach things such as the scientific method, measurement, and even the history of foods!

Cooking in the Classroom

Hi there! I’m Rachel Haltiwanger from The Cozy Learning Cottage, and I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to post on Minds in Bloom! I’ve spent my whole teaching career teaching elementary English learners either here in the US or abroad, and one of my favorite ways to integrate content, language skills, and collaborative learning is through cooking activities in the classroom. While these activities are

Overwhelmed by all of the educational apps available? Our guest blogger has narrowed down her list to the only five apps you need. See what you think of the apps on her list!

The Only 5 Apps You Need

Hello Everyone! I am Erin from rrrErin2Learn and am so excited to be guest blogging for Minds in Bloom! I can’t remember life before I started focusing on ed tech in my classroom, but it was only two years ago that my technology administrator handed me a couple of iPads and the password to download “ALL THE FREE APPS I WANTED!” I admit, I went

Teachers everywhere know how hard it is to fit in all your standards so that you teach everything you're supposed to teach in a school year. Often, teachers don't meet this high expectation, because there's just too much. How can we start making it happen? Our guest blogger shares her insight on integrating standards so that you can fit more curriculum into your lessons - curriculum that's interdisciplinary! Click through to read more.

Integrating Standards So You Have Time to Fit It All In

Hello everyone! I’m Tammy, and I’m excited to have this opportunity to share with you today here at Minds in Bloom! While most of my experience has been in teaching fifth grade, I currently teach third and have been teaching since 2004. Although I teach all subjects, I have a passion for teaching science. I love creating hands-on and engaging lessons and activities. When I first began my student teaching, I could not wait to get

Teaching the solar system is always fun in elementary school; students love learning about outer space and other planets. Our guest blogger shares three tips for making a solar system unit even more fun by including STEAM elements! Click through to get more details for the upper elementary classroom.

3 Tips to “S.T.E.A.M.” up Your Next Solar System Unit

This is Meghan Vestal, from Vestal’s 21st Century Classroom, and I am honored to be a guest blogger for Minds in Bloom! Recently, the science trend has changed from S.T.E.M. to S.T.E.A.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, & Math). We all know hands-on learning makes a lesson memorable for students, and integrating art is a great way to add creativity to any lesson. One of my

How can I use humor and laughter as a teaching tool for my students?

5 Ways to Use Humor in the Classroom

My name is Jeanine, and I am the girl behind the giggles at Third Grade Giggles! I am so honored to be guest blogging for Minds in Bloom, especially about my favorite topic: LAUGHTER! Charlie Chaplin said, “A day without laughter is a day wasted,” and I couldn’t agree more! But can laughter really be brought into the classroom? Absolutely! These five strategies will have

How can I improve my students speech and language in the classroom?

Speech and Language Strategies for the Classroom Teacher

Hello! I am Hallie Sherman, and I am a licensed speech-language pathologist. I am excited to be here today to share some strategies for classroom teachers to use in their classrooms to promote communication (for ALL students, not just those receiving speech). Thank you, Rachel, for allowing me this opportunity to share strategies on your blog! “Communication? Why do my students need that in school?”

Mrs. B from Mrs. B's First Grade shares her top five steps on implementing a class Twitter account in this post. She lays how to create a class Twitter account, how you can use it, and more!

5 Steps to Implement a Class Twitter Account

We all use a variety of social media outlets daily. Have you ever thought about using them in your classroom, though? My name is Sarah from Mrs B’s First Grade, and I am excited to be guest blogging today to give you five steps to successfully implement a class Twitter account! Setting up and using a class Twitter account can seem like a daunting task;

Ever heard of test prep rallies? Check out these ways to have test prep rallies at your school to head into standardized testing with a positive mindset!

Score with Your Test Prep Rally

Hi, I’m Sandra. I’m so honored to be writing about test prep rallies for Minds in Bloom. Test pep or prep rallies are motivational school assemblies that occur right before state testing and focus on raising student confidence and enthusiasm. You might wonder what makes me qualified to tell others about prep rallies. Well…I just may have invented them. I’ve been doing rallies since 1985

Try out a combined reading and writing unit with a mysteries theme in your classroom! Students will love opportunities to solve mysteries and expand their comprehension skills!

It’s a Mystery to Me!

Today, we’re welcoming Sharon from Classroom in the Middle! She’s sharing her ideas on a combined reading and writing unit with a mysteries theme. Are the finer points of reading comprehension and written composition still an elusive mystery to your students? To one degree or another, reading and writing can be a bit mysterious to all of us, so why not play up the mystery theme with

fun science activities for the classroom

Sliming You with Science

Rebecca from Science Girl Lessons has brought us a super fun and hands-on post today: It’s all about slime! Even if you’re not a science teacher, I bet you’ll want to make slime and get your hands dirty with this one!   I am so excited to be guest blogging today about one of the most FUN science activities out there… SLIME. With all the

What's your favorite comprehension question? You've never thought about it, have you?! Get your students thinking with this great comprehension question!

My Favorite Comprehension Question

Welcome back to Minds In Bloom! Today’s guest blogger is Carrie of My Book Boost, and she’s sharing her favorite comprehension question to ask her class. Read on to find out what it is and why it’s her favorite! What’s my favorite comprehension question to ask kids after reading? Let me give you a hint. It requires kids to use more than their brains to

How to use Task Cards in your classroom

31 Terrific Ways to Use Task Cards with Your Students

Using Task Cards with Your Students Lately, a lot of teachers have been asking me about how they can use task cards with their students. One of the things I love about task cards is that they are a very versatile teaching tool – there are tons of ways to use them! So, I decided to do a round up of all of the ways I know

How are your students' inferencing skills? I'm guessing they aren't great, since many students struggle with making inferences. Our guest blogger shares about her "Think Deep Thursday" strategy, where she zeroes in on inferences and helps her students infer successfully!

Thinking Deep with Inferencing

Hi y’all! It’s Katie “Texas” from Rock and Teach. I’m a fourth grade teacher in the great state of Texas. I’m so excited to be guest blogging for the amazing Rachel Lynette! The topic I’ll be blogging about today is inferences. Sometimes I wonder why forming an inference is so hard for students. Evidence + Schema = Inference… That should be clear as day to our

Kids don't always understand how they should be thinking about what they learn in order to really analyze and understand the information. This post, which tells you how to make thinking visible, provides several fun activities that you can do with your class to help them better understand their learning. Click through to read the whole post!

Make Thinking Visible

Hey there! I’m Kathie from Tried and True Teaching Tools, and I am beyond excited to be guest blogging today at Rachel Lynette’s Minds in Bloom! I was asked to write about making thinking clear to students, a topic near and dear to my heart! A fantastic resource is Making Thinking Visible: How to Promote Engagement, Understanding, and Independence for All Learners by Ron Ritchhart, Mark Church, and

Using task cards in the classroom doesn't have to be boring or uneventful. This guest blogger shares 10 exciting, interactive ways task cards can be used to get your students showing mastery while having fun!

Using Task Cards in the Classroom

Hi!  I’m Lyndsey from Lit with Lyns, and I’m thrilled to be doing a guest post on Minds in Bloom.  Over the past couple of years, I have become somewhat (ok, extremely) obsessed with using task cards in my classroom.  It started when I purchased Julie Faulkner’s Cite Textual Evidence Teaching Pack that included task cards.  Once I saw how engaged my students were, I

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