Helpful teaching strategies for getting students to analyze text. Incorporates both large and small student group discussions. Covers Common Core for ELA for speaking and listening and reading informational text.
Get a handle on Text Complexity with the help of Sarah Brown Wessling. See a presentation covering Text Complexity that includes the 3 part model for measuring text complexity. She also provides tips on applying Text Complexity to your classroom.
In Rigor is NOT A Four-Letter Word, 2nd Edition, Barbara Blackbun explains how to increase rigor so that all students can each higher levels of learning. This tip concentrates on using the Common Core State Standards' focus on text complexity as a means to increase rigor in your classroom.
To increase rigor related to text selection, it is valuable first to simply look at whether or not your students are reading texts that challenge them. You’re looking for a balance: Material should be difficult enough that students are learning something new, but not so hard that they give up. If you like to play basketball, you’ll improve if you play against someone who is better than you. But, if you play against the most talented NBA star, you’ll learn less because you are overwhelmed by his advanced skill level. A good benchmark guideline is that for text to be appropriately challenging for growth, students should be able to understand about 75% of what they are reading. That percentage means students understand the majority of the material, while learning something new. One option for increasing text difficulty is to identify where your students are reading, and provide text materials that match their level for growth.
As we look at how to incorporate this in your class, let me caution you. Looking at text difficulty should never be a limiting factor for your students. I visited one school where students were never allowed to choose something to read unless it was “within their point range.” That is not what I am recommending. Students always need the opportunity to read texts of their choice. And there are some books that may have a lower score on a readability scale, but the content is more difficult, perhaps due to the concepts described or due to the use of figurative language. However, I am saying that students also need selected opportunities to read material that is appropriately rigorous. Please note the word materials. Particularly with students who are reading substantially above or below their age or grade level, consider informational, nonfiction articles rather than novels. This helps address issues other than just the text difficulty. Remember, we are talking about depth, not length, and we don’t want students to feel like they are being punished.
No matter which tool you use to determine the difficulty of your text materials, it’s important to remember that text difficulty is only one factor to consider when selecting text for or with your students. Other considerations include the appropriateness of the text for students’ age or developmental levels, the content of the material, and the purpose for reading, such as interest or for research. It is critical to remember to use your own judgment along with varying measures of text difficulty. However, just because a text is recommended at a certain level does not mean that text is the most appropriate one for your students...
"We are living in a digitally focused world that requires us to adopt new life styles that we , the digital immigrants, were not used to before. This excessive digitization of life has also brought about some new learning concepts and we start talking about digital self-learning and digital peer-learning.Peeragogy is a project that embodies these notions and goes beyond them to empower you with the tools to delve deeper into a collaborative process of knowledge building and meaning making."
"o you are a music teacher and you want to have access to some productive apps to help you teach music using your iPad. Well you have landed in the right place, Educational Technology and Mobile Learning has just finished curating a list of some of the best music teaching and learning apps. We have checked several resources and included only what we think has some educational value, we know there are several other music apps scattered all over iTunes market but it is really hard to find those ones that can be recommended for teachers and students. Check out the list below and if you have other resources or you know of other educational music apps , please share them with us in the comment below."
11 Great Video Tools for Teachers: Over the last couple of years Educational Technology and Mobile Learning has been posting dozens and dozens of video web tools; but as you probably know, one of the common characteristics of almost all the web 2.0 tools is that they have a limited life span.
Education Week staff writer Nirvi Shah and contributing writer Ross Brenneman explore some of the nonacademic issues that bear on students’ learning.
Wanda Petronski has a weird name and wears the same old faded blue dress to school every day—and her Connecticut classmates don't let the little Polish girl forget it for a second. She tells her classmates she has a hundred beautiful dresses at home, but they don't believe her. Eventually, her classmates realize the error of their bullying ways, but Wanda has already left school.
The message in The Hundred Dresses, a Newbery Honor book in 1945, is still so powerful, the book was named the best of 25 books that connect children to social and emotional learning by the Open Circle Program at Wellesley Centers for Women.
The center, which helps teachers work with elementary-age children to acquire skills to build and maintain positive relationships, came up with the top 25 list (PDF) as part of the celebration of its 25th anniversary.
The Open Circle educators listed books that stand out as being especially authentic and memorable and are geared toward children in kindergarten through 5th grades. They deal with self-awareness, self-management, empathy, dealing with conflict, and problem-solving.
"Books can illustrate what an actual emotion looks like and then links that emotion to a word like 'sad', 'bad', or 'happy' with illustrations or actual photographs," said Peg Sawyer, an Open Circle trainer and coach. "A book related to responsible decisionmaking gives children the opportunity to talk about what the behaviors are that help them develop relationships, and conversely, what are the behaviors that get in the way of the relationship."
Also on the organization's list: Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key, about a boy who takes Ritalin and doesn't always make the best choices. And in Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy, two children in Maine strike up an unlikely friendship and fight to save one of their communities.
As for Wanda Petronski, (SPOILER ALERT!) one of her shy classmates soon realizes the effects of the teasing, though she doesn't have the guts to intervene. By the time the winner of a drawing contest the class had entered turns out to be Wanda, for her vivid drawings of the 100 dresses, Wanda has moved away and can't accept her award.
Mobile technology is making explosive growth into our schools and classrooms.There is now a growing trend towards taking advantage of mobile devices to inspire learning and promote students engagement, but the problem is that school districts can not cover the costs of these devices and to provide every student with a gadget would be out of their affordability particularly with the shrinking budgets being allocated for high tech materials.However, several initiatives have been taken to counter this financial block facing the implementation of mobile technology in classroom and one of these initiatives is called BYOD ( Bring Your Own Device).