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Tagged With: back to school

Great Activities for the First Week of School

The first week of school is different from all others. During this week, teachers and students alike spend time getting to know each other, become comfortable in the classroom where they’ll spend countless hours for the next nine months, and take time to reach a comfort level with leaving summer behind. I’ve gathered suggestions below from some of the leading education folks, those who are all about project-based learning rather than the application of pedagogy, to share with you. I’ve also included a few general back-to-school activities with a digital spin to get you back into school quickly and agilely.

Activities include:

  1. Authentically use forms
  2. Build a puzzle to decorate class walls for Back to School night
  3. Let students prepare how-tos to share with classmates
  4. Prepare English Language Learners to participate fully in class
  5. Review class tech tools so students are comfortable with them and not surprised when they pop up
  6. Review the class LMS
  7. Set individual goals
  8. Share back-to-school thoughts with a #hashtag
  9. Take class selfies
  10. Write a Back-to-school story

Authentically use Forms

Digital forms have become a go-to activity for polls, bell-ringers, exit tickets, quizzes, and more. When used early in the school year, they become an easy way to show students how technology can update classroom activities. Catlin Tucker suggests using forms the first week of school to collect student background information that is not only useful for you as the teacher but helps students get to know each other. Click her link and check out the complete lesson plan. She includes a video and a template you can use of her survey.

@Catlin_Tucker

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20 Back-to-School Articles

On everything from get-to-know-you activities to getting yourself ready:

  1. 11+ Back-to-School Night Tips
  2. 11 Back-to-school Activities for the First Month of School
  3. Great Back to School Classroom Activities
  4. Back to School Bundle of Lesson Plans at a Great Price
  5. Plan a Memorable Back to School Night
  6. New School Year? New Tech? I Got You Covered
  7. 5 Top Ways to Integrate Technology into the New School Year
  8. 5 Ways to Involve Parents in Your Class
  9. 3 Organizational Apps to Start the School Year
  10. 6 Tech Best Practices for New Teachers
  11. How to Prepare Students for PARCC Tests
  12. 8 Tech Tools to Get to Know Your Students for Back to School
  13. 5 Tools To Shake up the New Year
  14. 3 Apps to Help Brainstorm Next Year’s Lessons
  15. What Digital Device Should My School Buy?
  16. 4 Options for a Class Internet Start Page
  17. 5 Ways Teachers Can Stay on Top of Technology
  18. Back to School–Tech Makes it Easy to Stay On Top of Everything
  19. Dear Otto: I need year-long assessments
  20. 5 Tech Ed Tools to Use this Fall

For the entire list, click this Back-to-School category tag.

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Categories: Teacher resources | Tags: , | 2 Comments

11+ Back-to-School Night Tips

Come Join me on BYU Radio,  Sirius XM 143

Thursday, August 1st at 5:00 and 7:00 a.m. PT

as we discuss Back to School Tips!

Here’s the link:

BYUradio is available locally in Utah on 107.9 FM 89.1 HD2 FM and on. (more…)

Categories: Parents | Tags: | Leave a comment

Great Back to School Activities

The first week of school is different from all others. During this week, teachers and students alike spend time getting to know each other, become comfortable in the classroom where they’ll spend countless hours for the next nine months, and take time to reach a comfort level with leaving summer behind. I’ve gathered suggestions below from some of the leading education folks, those who are all about project-based learning rather than the application of pedagogy, to share with you. I’ve also included a few general back-to-school classroom activities with a digital spin to get you back into school quickly and agilely.

Classroom Activities include:

 

Read more on TeachHUB

(more…)

Categories: Teaching | Tags: | 1 Comment

11 Back-to-school Activities for the First Month of School

A new school year is a fresh start. For students, that means a different teacher and new classmates. For teachers, it’s another chance to make an impact on the lives of kids, turn them into life-long learners or at least let them experience the joy of learning.

In the chaos of getting ready for that all-important first day, it’s tempting to “do things as they’ve always been done” — like lectures, quizzes, student plays, and posters — but more and more teachers want to shake things up by adding innovative activities that differentiate for student learning styles while creatively accomplishing classroom goals.

Here are eleven such activities I’ve collected from colleagues using transformative tools that optimize learning while making students active participants in expected learning outcomes:

Class management

Use the webtool Too Noisy for the first month of class to show students how loud the class can get.  Demonstrate how it works by showing that the louder classroom sounds are, the more the needle moves into the red. After that, project it onto the class screen occasionally throughout the day when voices and activity exceed what is best for learning.  Let students notice the meter and then self-correct.

This tool is intuitive, easy to use, and is available on mobile devices only. A good alternative if you don’t have the ability to project your iPad to the class screen: Bouncy Balls.

Class Rules

Post a draft of class rules on the wall based on those followed last year. Ask students for suggestions. As they offer ideas, jot them down on the list. When everyone is done, post the edited list in place of the draft. Now, everyone is a stakeholder in classroom management.

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Categories: Lesson plans | Tags: | 2 Comments

Great Back to School Classroom Activities

The first week of school is different from all others. During this week, teachers and students alike spend time getting to know each other, become comfortable in the classroom where they’ll spend countless hours for the next nine months, and take time to reach a comfort level with leaving summer behind. I’ve gathered suggestions below from some of the leading education folks (like Catlin Tucker, Alice Keeler, Eric Curts, Richard Byrne, and Monica Burns), those who are all about project-based learning rather than the application of pedagogy, to share with you. I’ve also included a few general back-to-school classroom activities with a digital spin to get you back into school quickly and agilely.

Classroom Activities include:

  1. Authentically use forms.
  2. Build a puzzle to decorate class walls for Back to School Night.
  3. Let students prepare how-tos to share with classmates.
  4. Prepare English Language Learners to participate fully in class.
  5. Review class tech tools so students are comfortable with them and not surprised when they pop up.
  6. Review the class LMS.
  7. Set individual goals.
  8. Share back-to-school thoughts with a #hashtag.
  9. Take class selfies.
  10. Write a back-to-school story.

–read more on TeachHUB

(more…)

Categories: Teaching | Tags: | 2 Comments

Back to School: A Bundle of Lesson Plans at a Great Price

back to schoolLots of teachers want to integrate tech into their class but picking what to use among the thousands of offerings is daunting.

Where to purchase:   Teachers Pay Teachers

Price:                          $9.99

Details:

  • for grades K-12
  • five resources, from posters to pedagogy to lesson plans
  • 175 pages, delivered digitally via PDF
  • available only through Teachers Pay Teachers

These five tools (included) help you start Day One and can be used throughout the year:

25 Digital Tools in the Classroom

The 56-page 25 Digital Tools in the Classroom is a thorough discussion on which are the most useful tools in any K-8 classroom, classified by appropriate grade level. This includes popular digital tools such as blogs, backchannel devices, vocabulary decoding tools, avatars, digital portfolios, digital note-taking, and more.

This is the same as the Ask a Tech Teacher resource, 25 Digital Tools in the Classroom You don’t need to purchase both.

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Categories: Lesson plans | Tags: | 1 Comment

Plan a Memorable Back to School Night

Back to School night is a time-honored ritual where teachers and parents meet, with or without children, and preview the upcoming school year. Teachers share information about their teaching style and methodology, how they grade, what students can do to thrive, and how parents can connect to classroom activities. It’s a way of easing everyone back into the education journey after a long summer break and is arguably one of the most impactful days in the school year.

But Back to School night has changed over the years in large part because families have changed. Consider this list of reasons why from Edutopia:

  • Increased pace of life
  • Greater economic demands
  • Alterations in family composition and stability
  • Breakdown of neighborhoods and extended families
  • Weakening of community institutions

The most important goal of Back to School Night — establishing the parent-teacher partnership — is a lot more complicated to reach than it used to be.

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Categories: Classroom management, Parents | Tags: | 2 Comments

12 Fresh Ways to Assess Student Learning

assessmentAssessing student learning used to be as simple as giving a test that consisted of multiple choice, True/False, short answer, and/or essay. How many answers students got right told the teacher how much they knew. No need to look further. Simply grade, record, and move on to the next chapter.

Educators have come to realize that there are lots of reasons why a test score doesn’t reflect student knowledge. Maybe the student had a bad day; maybe s/he isn’t good at memorizing (and the test was mostly memorized facts); maybe education researchers are right that doing well on tests isn’t a predictor of student success.

Tossing tests makes a teacher’s job more difficult. I’ll stipulate to that. Habits, templates, and routines are much easier than reinventing the assessment wheel but a tool that results in passionate students committed to lifelong learning gets my attention.

That’s what the next twelve options are: assessment strategies that inspire student interest and allow them to share what they know in ways compatible with their personal communication style. These can be used formatively or summatively and can be created by teachers or students-as-teachers. Decide what works best for your circumstances. The uniting characteristics are that all assess:

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Categories: Teacher resources, Teaching Strategies, Web Tools | Tags: , | 1 Comment

It’s Time to go Back to School. Lots of Ideas!

I’ve written a lot of Back-to-School articles over the last few years. They cover so many topics–see if you find what you’re looking for here:

3 Apps to Help Brainstorm Next Year’s Lessons

3 Organizational Apps to Start the School Year

4 Options for a Class Internet Start Page

5 Tech Ed Tools to Use this Fall

5 Tools To Shake up the New Year

5 Top Ways to Integrate Technology into the New School Year

5 Ways Teachers Can Stay on Top of Technology

5 Ways to Involve Parents in Your Class

6 Tech Best Practices for New Teachers

8 Tech Tools to Get to Know Your Students for Back to School

11 Back-to-School Activities for the First Month

Back to School–Tech Makes it Easy to Stay On Top of Everything

Dear Otto: I need year-long assessments

How to Prepare Students for PARCC Tests

New School Year? New Tech? I Got You Covered

Plan a Memorable Back to School Night

Turnitin Releases Free Back-to-School Resources

What Digital Device Should My School Buy?

(more…)

Categories: Teacher resources | Tags: , | 2 Comments