Sunday, November 30, 2014

Teachers Pay Teachers December 2014 Sale

Many of my blog readers know that I offer many of my teaching worksheets and plans on Teachers Pay Teachers.

To celebrate all that I am thankful for, I've been offering all of my products (usually under $2) 10% off! This sale will last until December 1st!

That's not all! December 2nd all of my products over $2 are 20% off!


Teacher's Pay Teachers is holding their Cyber Monday sale December 1st and 2nd.You get an additional 10% off using the code TPTCYBER

That means if you shop on the 2nd and use the code you'll save 28% off the normal price!

What;s my best selling product? All Summer in a Day Reading Packet normally $2.50, on Monday it is $1.80 if you use the coupon

For those of you who are strapped fro cash, I also offer quite a few products for free: This worksheet on phrasal verbs, and this great BINGO game with minimal pairs are always free.

If you don't already have an account sign up here, and let me know if you have any questions.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Guest Post: Using Technology to Teach Writing

Guide for Teachers: How to Teach Writing Through Technology?
As a teacher, you can either choose to assign pointless papers to your students or inspire them to think and facilitate their ability to write. The current writing crisis in our schools comes from one main cause: academic writing being taught as a mechanical process of research, writing and editing. If you want to teach your students to start learning through the writing process, then you need to adjust your teaching style to their needs and learning potential.

As part of every student’s life, technology should not be excluded from the teaching process. By forcing your students to research the library and neglect online tools and resources when writing papers, you are making the entire process boring right from the start. Since your students are being engaged by infographics, videos, hyperlinks and images, you should infuse that digital world to bring some fun and more effectiveness into the classroom.

Although technology doesn’t have all answers to the writing crisis, the right tools can still help you inspire your students to write more and write better. These awesome tools will help you start the revolution:

Your students will love collaborating on writing projects through this platform. The features for instant editing and sharing make the process easier than ever, and you can join the process and monitor their progress in real time. There are eight distinctive author colors to choose from, so the input of each student will be clearly recognizable.

As a teacher, you can also rely on the assistance of NinjaEssays when you need to create perfect coursework material.Carissa's Note: I would NOT give this site to students as they essentially are given the option to buy essays.

This is another online tool you can recommend for collaborative work. It enables the users to perform bulk uploads and save a lot of time on the go. The other features include: secure file sharing, online file storage, presentation, file synchronization, spreadsheet, Word document, task management, and more. 

Even though there are many writing tools and platforms you can start using, sometimes it is better to start from the basics. No, that doesn’t mean Microsoft Word! Google Docs has a simplistic, clean interface that makes the writing process distraction-free. In addition, your students can also use Google Docs to collaborate on a team project in real time. 

Your students love reading blogs about the things that interest them, so why not use that potential to teach them something really useful? Edublogs is a student-friendly blogging platform that can replace the paper newsletter. You can inspire your students to find interesting online material associated to the concepts they learn at class and write weekly blogs. That is the best way to inspire your students to write, but you’ll also find that the best blogs will lead to fantastic discussions. 

This is another great platform that enables its users to explore and create educational content online. You can use some great posts from Glogster to show your students that writing can be fun, and then inspire them to create their own blogs. You can also create teams and assign blogging as a team project.

Improve your teaching methods with the help of technology!

Educational technology offers endless benefits for both teachers and students. It’s no secret that today’s schooling system is burdening students with more writing assignments than they can handle. The only way to help them approach academic writing with enthusiasm is to start relying on technology and infuse some elements of fun and effective collaboration throughout the process.
Robert Morris is an English teacher from New York. Find him on Google+.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Top Ten WORST Class Management Techniques

I write a lot about classroom management because I feel it is an important topic for so many teachers. If you are a great teacher, but you can't control a classroom, your students will never learn. If you are an adequate teacher with great classroom control, then your students will probably learn more.

I know it can be frustrating. I am not a big praying person, but when I teach...I pray about twice a day. Once is usually a devotional, it tends to be positive, "Bless this room and all who walk in it to open them up to learning."Then, there are the prayers that are a bit more negative, "Dear Lord give me the patience not to react to this students goading. Help me understand that they are young, and I am the responsible adult who should not react poorly."

I have posts about great classroom management books, props to use, and general ideas to quiet a room. This post is different. This post will tell you what NOT to do. It uses examples found online via newspapers.

1. Don't use fear! There are reports of some students who were told there was a monster in a closet and then locked in their when they misbehaved. The students often shouted and cried (sometimes to the point of puking) while the teacher kept the door shut. See the related news piece here

2. Don't threaten to get physical Even if you have no intent of following through this is not why you want students to listen. One teacher was put on probation for threatening to stab her students with a fruit knife she kept in her desk drawer according to this article.

3. Don't get jokingly physical! Even if you are trying to be amusing, slapping or hitting a student is NEVER acceptable. In this article the teacher actually slapped a student several times trying to allude to the recent movie Bridesmaids.

4. Especially don't get seriously physical. I know that violence can seem like the best answer in the heat of the moment, but how can we expect our students to pick another path if we ourselves can't. Here's one example of a student who was punched by his teacher.

5. Don't spit on them ... really? I need to say this? While it can be hard sometimes, spitting is never the answer.

6. Don't duct tape them to the chair. I know most teachers have that one student that just can't stay still. I understand how duct tape can, at times, be tempting, but more than one teacher has tried using duct tape in the class. One was accused of bullying, the other teacher was just said to have used an inappropriate technique.

7. Don't put them in a bag and leave them in the hallway. You can call it a "therapy bag," if you like, but putting students in a bag and then putting them out of your eyesight is not the best way to help a situation!

8. Don't have them wear a doggie cone. I see some online memes that joke about this too, but I think we can all are that there are better options for classroom management before even considering a doggie cone.

9. Don't strip search them. When I was in high school one of the dress code rules was no thongs. This was clearly rarely enforced as no teacher was going to request to see your underwear. One third grade teacher felt strip searching a student was acceptable.

As you can see this list is only at nine right now. If you have another technique you have read about, seen or heard about let me know! I'd love to get your feedback.
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