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Hotchalk Global

news & tips for teachers

News & Tips for Teachers

PREV 1-20 of 500

Student-Designed Curriculum: Helping Students Create Their Own Lesson Plans

August 6th, 2014

By Monica Fuglei When I was asked what my most important lesson learned as a teacher was, my reply focused on the idea of student engagement and ownership. No matter how well-prepared a teacher might be, I firmly believe that if a …

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Scientific Poetry: The Benefits of Cross-curricular Lesson Plans

July 22nd, 2014

By Monica Fuglei In 2001, I was a poet with writer’s block and without metaphors. As I browsed the shelves of my local bookstore, I picked up a text that shifted my paradigms as a writer: a children’s physics question and answer …

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Dilemma Discussions in Lesson Plans: Why to Have Them and How to Lead Them

July 8th, 2014

By Monica Fuglei One great way to engage students with content material is by having them participate in dilemma discussions, also called value discussions, in a variety of scenarios inspired by their content learning. These conversations help students to more fully understand …

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Phenomenal Woman: Lesson Plans to Explore the Work of Maya Angelou

June 24th, 2014

By Monica Fuglei The passing of American icon Dr. Maya Angelou makes this an excellent time to ensure that students of all ages learn about her work and life. Here are five lesson plans for a variety of age groups that can help …

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Increase Reading Engagement: How to Use Self-Directed Reading in Your Lesson Plans

June 10th, 2014

By Monica Fuglei One of the most terrifying and excellent moments in my classroom is when my students ask me a question I cannot answer and we all embark, separately and then together, on research and learning that is natural and inspired. …

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The Multicultural Classroom: Tips for Adding Diversity to History Lessons

May 27th, 2014

By Monica Fuglei American classrooms are increasingly culturally and economically diverse. In order to engage everyone, it’s important that all students see themselves in the history we study. While our textbooks may not always reflect the diversity we’d like to bring to …

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Add Creative Writing to Your Lesson Plans: Five Engaging Strategies

May 6th, 2014

By Monica Fuglei Working creative writing into the classroom curriculum can be difficult, but it is incredibly worthwhile and can give students new ways of seeing academics and the world in general. Consider dedicating some classroom time to these quick and easy …

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Lesson Plan Modifications: Teaching Diverse Learners in Your Classroom

April 22nd, 2014

By Monica Fuglei Special education teachers are well-trained in managing students with individualized education plans and 504 documentation, but general classroom teachers may wonder how to modify curriculum to adapt to the needs of all of their learners. Whether or not students …

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Five Fun Ways to Add a Spring to Your Science Lessons

April 15th, 2014

By Monica Fuglei  Spring is in the air and as it unfolds, students focus their attention outside the classroom. This is a great time to bring the outside in by incorporating natural science activities into lesson plans. Students and teachers alike want …

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Effective Failure: Teaching Students The Power of Mistakes

April 8th, 2014

By Monica Fuglei In the classic storybook “The Little Engine that Could,” the little blue engine’s self-doubt when challenged to climb a steep mountain turns to triumph when, with hard work and confidence, it succeeds. The little engine’s “I think I cans” …

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Getting Creative Before Spring Break: How to Make Class Time Count

April 1st, 2014

By Monica Fuglei Planning class time in the days leading up to a break is tough for teachers: students are excited and twitchy, making it difficult to ascertain whether they are able to invest in content. While some teachers stick to their …

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Three Ways Parents Can Determine Kindergarten Readiness

March 25th, 2014

By Monica Fuglei Spring is in the air and many parents are anxiously trying to decide whether to enroll their children in kindergarten next fall. While most states have a clear cutoff regarding age-based qualification for kindergarten, many parents worry about their …

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Three Reasons Why Parents Should Welcome Late-Start Days

March 18th, 2014

By Monica Fuglei When a call comes through announcing a late-start school day, we groan a little bit. As parents, a late-start day means adjusting drop-off and pickup times, reconsidering before-school care needs, and working with children underfoot for the first few …

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Five Ways Neil deGrasse Tyson and Bill Nye Can Help Teachers Improve Science Literacy

March 11th, 2014

By Monica Fuglei The president, an astrophysicist, and a scientist take a selfie and post it to Twitter; adults and children across America find the scientists as easy to identify as the president. This might be a dream come true for science …

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Do School Uniforms Improve Public Schools?

March 4th, 2014

by Monica Fuglei For many students, back-to-school shopping includes time spent picking out the outfits that are most likely to impress classmates. Subsequent school-day mornings unearth parent and child battles about holes in knees, shirts that are either a bit too tight …

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The Importance of Note-Taking in Digital and Face-to-Face Classrooms

February 25th, 2014

by Monica Fuglei During a recent discussion and lecture in the writing class I teach, I filled two dry-erase boards with information and explained that much of it was not available in the text. One student scribbled away in a spiral notebook …

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How Effective is Digital Educational Media? The Research on Home and School Use

February 18th, 2014

by Monica Fuglei My house is full of the “warm glowing warming glow” of screens. Between the television, tablet, and laptops, we have more access to digital media than we have people in the home. My daughter’s class is assigned their own …

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“Sweet, it’s Movie Day!” Engaging Strategies for Showing Films in Class

February 11th, 2014

by Monica Fuglei When I was in school, a class period (or two!) dedicated to watching a film was definitely a highlight for me. Now, my students  consistently request movies or television shows as learning aids, but as an instructor I struggle …

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Do Students Miss Out When Schools Stop Teaching Cursive?

February 4th, 2014

by Monica Fuglei The summer before third grade, I practiced writing my name in the beautiful curves of writing I associated with grown-ups. In third grade, I would become somebody. I would cast off the ugly old writing of my early school …

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Using the Pedagogy of Engagement to Help At-Risk Students

January 28th, 2014

by Monica Fuglei Research shows there is a significant link between poverty and student performance. This opportunity and achievement gap represents the reality that socioeconomic status influences student performance. While teachers in high-need schools cannot solve poverty, the true irony is that …

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