Our dedicated team of bloggers share their perspectives on the latest trends and happenings in the education space. Read about their experiences and opinions, then join the conversation! Do you agree wholeheartedly, or disagree with a fervor? Either way, we'd love to hear your point of view.
Standardized testing is a hard reality we face as educators. It is a high stress, high stakes, and high pressure system that often drives our instructional decisions. So take a moment and listen to a teacher's honest opinion of standardized testing.
Are you daunted by the prospect of projects in your classroom? Don't be. Year-long projects can ignite passion and focus in your students if you make them meaningful to both of you.
Being a young teacher is often so stressful you don't listen to advice that would make your life easier, and your teaching better. In my early years, I didn't listen enough and cost myself a lot of unnecessary work and stress. Here is my story.
Summer reading is critical for students to retain knowledge and skills learned in the previous school year. Students who don't read are at risk of falling behind their classmates. Parents and teachers can avoid this by making sure kids take time to read.
Movies can be an effective teaching tool when it comes to history, but you need to be sure that your selections are providing accurate information. Check out these recommendations for films that are both informative and entertaining.
Classroom supplies are critical to teachers being able to do their jobs everyday. However, across America teachers spend large amounts of money out of their pockets to get the supplies they need. Teachers should stop spending their own money on classroom supplies and get creative in funding those needs.
Never let it be said that a single person cannot change the world. It happened to me, thanks to one remarkable teacher who showed me the kind of instructor - and person - I wanted to be.
Many advanced professionals shy away from mentoring. However, mentoring is a way you can build your professional profile while helping people at all levels of their careers.
Volunteering in your child's classroom benefits you, your child, the teacher, and your school community. It's something every parent should consider doing - no matter how busy you think you are.
When my son returned to school after many years as a homeschooler, I faced the inevitable issues of learning to deal with another teacher in my place. It took time and effort to develop a good relationship, but it was worth every bit to give him the support he needed.
Success in college isn't just about grades and SAT scores. There are many key changes needed in schools to prepare students to be successful in college.
Are formal titles going out of style? I asked several teachers how they prefer students to address them, and not surprisingly, their answers were as different as they were.
Video games are a hot topic amongst parents and teachers, with people arguing for and against their usefulness. However, when structured appropriately, video graming can be a powerful educational tool.
It's really no secret that spanking has been a controversial topic for quite some time now - decades, in fact. Today we'll take a scientific look at what spanking can do to a child's brain and behavior.
Teachers already have tight schedules, so tasks and activities that waste time are especially problematic. Let's take a look at a few factors that can eat up time during the school day.
While society makes it seem like everyone needs to go to college, it isn't for everyone. There are many options for adults who are questioning if college is the right career path for them.
We live in a time in the world where in many fields, the educational bubble has burst. We are left wondering if we should invest in advanced college degrees, or in a home. The answer to this question is far from simple.
While all forms of college education come with some value, not all degree programs are equal when it comes to employment opportunities. The type of degree you earn can have a major impact on your career prospects and earning potential.
Making the transition from high school to college requires some serious modifications to your personal and study habits. You'll need to learn some new skills in order to handle the increased freedom and responsibility.
Choosing a college is a major decision full of implications for your future, perhaps none more important than your chances of finding a job. When selecting an institution, you'll need to be aware of how your school will help (or hinder) your career prospects.
Teaching ESL may not seem like valuable career experience to some. However, teaching ESL allows you to develop skills that will help you leverage your career in the global economy.
Though teaching special education can be a challenging and arduous profession, it offers numerous benefits and rewards, both professional and personal, for those willing to pursue such a career.
Trying to teach while earning a Ph.D. is an extremely demanding undertaking that requires focus, concentration, and dedication. Use these strategies to stay on top of your teaching workload and keep yourself from falling behind in your doctoral studies.
As the priorities of the educational system shift, certain subjects are poised to enjoy new prominence. Despite the new wave of additions, some classic topics will retain their importance in the curriculum.
After years of educating my son at home, I transitioned him into a local high school at his request. Here's what I did to make that transition easy on both of us and ensure he continued to thrive in school.
Reciprocal teaching gives students a chance to switch roles with the teacher, educating their peers through a student-led dialogue that helps to reinforce reading abilities, develop critical thinking skills, and embolden students.
Having another teacher by your side can be an enormous benefit, but it requires plenty of communication and organization. These strategies can help you get the most out of your co-teaching experience.
Dialogue journals are an effective way to form relationships with your students while simultaneously improving their writing skills. Learn more about these dynamic learning tools and how they can be of use in your classroom.
Not every new form of media is suitable for the classroom or conducive to learning, but podcasts can be a fantastic resource for teachers and students alike.
Encourage your students to read extensively and they will improve both their reading comprehension and their writing abilities - two critical aspects of language mastery.
Planning to be absent from your teaching job in order to care for a relative, attend a family event, or for other personal reasons doesn't have to be a process. Just complete these four tasks ahead of time and you'll be on your way to planned time off.
Outdoor activities are an entertaining and engaging way to help your students learn. Keep reading for a few suggestions on tasks you can complete outside the classroom.
Introducing blogging in the classroom can open the door to new assignments and experiences for your students and help them acquire skills they may use later on in college and the work force. Should you introduce your students to blogging?
Ice breakers are an invaluable tool that can help you and your students relax and get off on the right foot. Here's a couple of suggestions that will help you get to know your new class.
Learn about five of my favorite tools middle school teachers can use to make their lesson planning easier and get students engaged during those challenging tween years.
The reality is that we live in a digital society, and our students in particular are growing up with unprecedented exposure and access to the Internet and technology. As a result, we need to be more vigilant as teachers to educate our students how to be good digital citizens.
Encouraging students to make positive impacts in their community can be difficult. However, incorporating community based projects into the curriculum can help teachers encourage students to take action in ways that will benefit the community as a whole.
School has an opportunity--arguably, a responsibility--to teach students much more than facts and figures. While skills like reading and mathematics are important, we must remember we are preparing children to be functional adults, not data processors.
Rotation models offer an innovative and engaging approach to classroom instruction. Check out some of the many benefits and see how this teaching strategy can benefit your students.
Math is one of those subjects that students seem to love or hate. Even if your students dislike math, there are some easy steps you can take to help them appreciate math and understand why we teach it.
When dealing with difficult students, it's easy to get frustrated and lose your cool. By focusing on the long-term and sticking to positive reinforcement, you can stay on the bright side and turn the situation into a learning opportunity.
As teachers, we sometimes get in a rush under the pressure of standards and standardized tests just to get done. However, if we learn how to draw on what students already know, we can increase our effectiveness and perhaps even free up time to make our lessons as engaging as possible.
It might look like pawning off work on students, but in reality, having students grade each other's assignments in class can have huge educational--and social--benefits.
Though your students may wonder aloud about the real world application of course topics such as calculus and Romantic poetry, these classes serve as valuable building blocks that develop essential job and life skills for life outside the classroom.
What do you do when the stress of overcrowded classrooms, an overreaching administration, and aggressive students becomes too much? Can you regain your love of teaching, or is it time to hang it up and look to another career?
Furnishing a classroom with supplies and resources is often a tedious and expensive task for teachers, but it doesn't have to be. Keep reading to learn how I am able to supply my classroom without ever touching my personal bank account.
As technology advances and becomes more capable, there are many new teaching styles coming into play. There's a lot of 'new and improved' to be seen, but it's important to remember that sometimes, newer isn't always better.
Bullying can be hard to identify and deal with, especially if your students are actively trying to hide it from you. I had one such case and, while it wasn't easy, I managed to deal with it constructively and turn it into a teachable moment for my students.
We all want our children to learn as much as they possibly can, but as homeschool parents, it's easy to worry if they're learning enough. Do you sometimes wonder if your children are really learning all they need to? Relax, and read on...
Getting students to see the value of helping their classmates of differing abilities isn't always easy. I've found a few key ways to make it happen and give every student the opportunity to excel.
Let's face it, homeschooling your high schoolers can be tough work, but you don't have to do it alone. We used college instructors to teach our homeschoolers. Here's how we did it.
As parents, we naturally want the best for our children. Sometimes, though, children learn best from their mistakes. See why it's important that your homeschool child fails - at least once in a while!
Dual enrollment can be a great way for your homeschooled high schooler to finish high school and start college - at the same time! If you are considering this option, read on to weigh the pros and cons of dual enrollment.
Getting parents actively involved in their child's education and classroom can reap great benefits. In today's post, I'm going to explain how boosting parental involvement led to my best year of teaching yet.
Getting difficult parents on your side is key to a productive, harmonious school year. Doing so can not only improve your outlook; it can help all your students to have a better, more positive experience in your classroom as well.
Microlearning is a hot trend in corporate training, cheap and easy to incorporate into the workday. But as one new hire discovered, it's not the universal choice for developing skills and competence.
Looking for rocking project ideas for your middle school students that will get them excited while bringing home the lesson? From board games to marketing campaigns, the following are sure to engage.
The data is in: the lecture is out as the go-to learning tool for the live classroom. Here's how one educator improved her teaching with less talk, at least from the lectern.
Transferring your classroom from a teaching model to a blended classroom can have an important impact on your students. Read on to learn how to successfully make this transition.
Recently, there has been a lot of debate surrounding the effectiveness of traditional letter grading systems--and for good reason. Read on to learn why I made the decision to get with the times and stop using letter grades in my classroom.
Classroom projects are my favorite way to get my students involved and make even the most worn-out subjects come alive. With access to the Internet and a little creativity, it's possible to infuse wonder on the cheap and have some fun doing it too.
Keeping order in your classroom can seem like a losing battle, but it doesn't have to be. Using a few easy tips, you can give control back to your students and bring back the serenity you've been missing.
Keeping students engaged while trying to teach them monotonous material can often be a challenge. If you find yourself having trouble getting your class to participate, check out these fun and challenging ideas.
When a teacher lightened up on the lectures and adopted a blended learning model in his classroom, students demonstrated deeper interest in both subject matter and each other. It's all in the balance, he says.
All teachers deal with rowdiness in the classroom from time to time, whether it involves one or two students, or the entire class. Read on to find some tips on how to take back control of your rowdy classroom.
So you're using a virtual classroom for the first time. Online courses can sometimes be more demanding than a traditional classroom setting, and the professors and instructions just as focused. Here are some easy ways to keep yourself accountable, plugged in, and excited about your classes.
Letter grades give my students a clear way to measure their progress and the motivation to do well because they have a clear goal they can measure and see. They don't get that with a pass/fail system.
Microlearning is the hot trend in the education world, and for good reason. This style of teaching is extremely effective at reaching students and presents information in a clear and easily digestible format.
Expert teacher Bo Cheli and education disruptor Michael B. Horn take a deep dive into how technology and innovation are forcing the role of the teacher in the classroom, as well as our entire education system, to adapt and transform.
Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) classrooms are becoming more and more popular, and with good reason--implemented correctly, the BYOD model can change the way you teach.
Extra training and the support of professionals I respected helped me to become the kind of teacher I wanted to be and offered me access to resources I hadn't known existed.
BYOD classrooms have been gaining in popularity in recent years, but they are not without their fair share of risks. Before starting one of your own, you need to be ready.
If you have reached a point in homeschooling where things have gotten hard, take heart. Here's how I navigated the rough patches of our homeschool journey.
In the ever-changing landscape of modern classrooms, it's important to keep up with new innovations and teaching techniques. Understanding what separates virtual, hybrid, and flipped classrooms is the key to educational success in the digital age.
The benefits of using technology in the classroom are increasingly evident but maintaining a balance between your space and lesson plans is not always easy. This post goes over some tips for creating and sustaining a blended classroom.
Homeschooling can be a rewarding way to educate your children, but sometimes you can have too much of a good thing. Read on to learn how you can save your family from the grips of the homeschool monster.
It's a new year, so what better time to check out these popular trends in homeschooling? From math to history, homeschool parents everywhere are turning to these resources. It's never too early to start planning for fall!
No matter how much you prepare, you can't really understand exactly what homeschooling will entail until you experience it. Here are seven things I wish someone had told me before we began our journey.
Ideally, professional development aims to continually inform teachers and make them better at their jobs. The problem with professional development is that there are a few pitfalls that are often repeated, yet easily avoided, as we'll discuss here.
Our kids definitely benefited from homeschooling - both academically and emotionally. However, they weren't the only ones to benefit. Homeschooling also brought us closer as a family. Here's our story.
Homeschooling sounded like such a great idea, but a school year can be a really long time - especially the first year! Here's how I survived my first year of homeschooling our kiddos and what I learned along the way.
With the rise in use of cellphones, tablets, and handheld devices in every day life, ever wonder when you'll have that classroom in your pocket? You already do.
We go into teaching with idealistic notions of what life will be like. But sometimes, the challenges of the classroom becomes too much. In such cases, we teachers can turn to virtual teaching to do what we came into the profession to do: make a difference.
As we increase the use of technology in the classroom, we must also be conscious of ethical issues that arise from that technology use. Understanding the biggest ethical issues affecting our classrooms will help us better understand how to address them.
Virtual teaching may sound like teaching at a more relaxed pace and flexible schedule, but in reality it involves as much work as teaching in a traditional classroom. Here's a list of important reminders that every virtual teacher should keep in mind.
Technology in classrooms has always been a bit controversial. But as our society advances and attitudes shift, technology is quickly becoming an essential part of the educational process, especially when it comes to engaging students.
The battle to add new tech to our early learning classroom was harder than I had imagined it would be, but the gains our students made were worth the struggle
Hybrid classrooms are a much talked about trend in education these days. Despite the benefits touted in the media and research, the reality is that this model is not suited to every student or teacher.
Converting to a hybrid classroom model is tempting for educators who want new strategies to meet the needs of their students. However, if you don't have an experienced mentor to follow there are some serious pitfalls you can face.
Introducing technology into your modern classroom can offer students access to a world of information and resources, and it's easier than you might think
Access to funding, or lack of it, can set students on a path to success or failure in a world that is increasingly reliant on machines to connect and inform us
Setting up a hybrid learning environment takes a lot of deliberate and thoughtful planning. You need to plan things from the digital infrastructure to more traditional components of teaching such as interactions and assessment.
Teaching in a classroom setting may be on its way to becoming a method of the past, but it is still a training tool needed for the future, especially as a means of learning how to lead, instruct and engage students in any type of classroom setting.
If you are excited about implementing technology in your classroom, you're not alone. There are so many great resources available to enhance your existing lessons. However, do you have the legal right to use them? Read on for some quick tips to navigate the legal issues and get technology into your classroom.
Putting my education first put me in the perfect position to take charge of my career. It wasn't always smooth sailing, but in the end, it was definitely worth it.
Setbacks to graduating in a timely fashion—whether the goal is a high school diploma or a college degree—range from illness to irrelevant course offerings. One successful graduate tells how she used online classes to sprint past the hurdles and make it to the finish line in record time.
Students in K-12 have access to a variety of instructional environments, including traditional, online and a hybrid of both. In this post, we'll discuss the pros and cons of all three.
Transitioning from high school to college does not have to be as intimidating as it sounds. Many schools offer a variety of valuable resources to help students take the step from high school into college. Here's a firsthand look at how I was able to make my journey a smooth one.
Committing to a college education put me in the perfect position to take charge of my career. It involved a lot of hard work, but in the end it definitely helped me to become more successful.
There are lot of things people don't tell you about teaching for the first time. It is stressful and overwhelming, but there are some strategies you can use to make it a lot more fun.
Teaching in a virtual environment was a fascinating experience that made me reconsider how I connected to all my students, making me a much better teacher than I was before the experience.
Setting up a virtual classroom is a challenge if you have no idea what you're doing - and I didn't. Learn from my mistakes and take your online lessons to another level.
Blended classrooms open a world of possibilities for your students. However, this new world of learning comes at a cost. Read on to learn more about the downsides of blended classrooms.
A few simple tools, a small cash investment, and the support of my fellow educators made it possible for me to transform a borrowed classroom and incorporate active learning on a budget.
Hybrid classrooms are a unique opportunity for educators. This design allows students to take control of their academics and become more self-directed learners with deeper critical thinking skills.
Students who would once struggle to keep up with the rest of the class are now thriving in today's classroom thanks to technology. In fact, new technology and online resources bring learning to students in a way that was once seen as little more than science fiction.
Technology impacts everything we do, including education. What does our constant connection mean for our modern classroom and what can we do to help our students overcome their addiction?
When they say hindsight is 20/20, it is definitely true for teachers. While teacher training programs do their best to prepare you for the job, there are so many things I wish I had known going into the classroom. These tips will help you with the reality of your first year in the classroom.
We think when we leave a teacher preparation program that we are prepared for the classroom. But the reality is that there are many surprises first-year teachers experience that college can't prepare them for. Brace yourself for these surprises to make your first year in the classroom a smoother and happier time.
Have you ever considered enrolling in online college classes? Have you wondered what the benefits of online classes are? Here, you'll learn how online classes gave me a head start in college and how they can do the same for you.
Online classes allowed me to reach my educational goals and improve my life on my own time without sacrificing the things that mattered most to me in the process
Teaching children requires flexibility, choice, and an openness to try new things in order to facilitate learning. An active classroom has the potential to do all that and more when used properly.
If you're trying to decide between a community college or university education, let me share my story. My community college program helped me to land my dream job, advancing my career without driving me into debt. Read on to find out how!
Taking a few simple steps ahead of my first year of teaching helped me to walk into my classroom composed, confident, and ready to give my students the best year ever
For students who are poorly or incompletely served by their local schools, a virtual classroom can provide the ideal solution and level the educational playing field.
Homework has been around since the early 20th century and so has the debate of whether or not homework is a healthy policy for students. This editorial piece explores homework, its history, and its purpose so that you can decide if the no homework policy is right for you.
If you're about to go to college, there are a few things you may not have considered about the transition. While immensely important, such aspects go overlooked by thousands of students each year, leading to a needlessly stressful period of time. To help you be among the prepared, this article discusses a few key areas that you should focus on for a smooth college transition.
Being a virtual teacher offers you the best of the teaching world. You get to spend your time focusing on student relationships, while often enjoying a flexible schedule and saving money.
Whereas some people will think that virtual teachers have an easy job because they don't have to manage a traditional classroom, the reality is far from that. Virtual teachers face a variety of challenges unique to their teaching situation.
The transition to college can be intimidating, especially so many unknowns are involved. To help make your transition as smooth as possible, here are some tips from someone who's been there and done that - and what she'd do differently.
New technology, teacher shortages and the rise of internet-based classrooms may spell the end for the traditional classroom, but that doesn't have to be a bad thing.
Engaging my students with active learning exercises helped to improve their scores, made learning more interesting, and even improved their self-confidence.
The debate over the pluses and minuses of homework for K-12 students has been going back and forth in the United States since the 1940's. One mother, particularly, was delighted when her daughter's school recently decided to nix the take-home worksheets and limit the coursework to the school day.
Killing the homework assignments in my class increased engagement and lead to healthier, happier students that are more invested in learning what I have to teach them.
Some students believe online courses are an easy way to earn college credits. The reality is that online and traditional face-to-face courses present similar challenges, which we'll discuss in this post.
When I was in high school, my only thoughts about transitioning to college involved the college application process and which college I would eventually choose. I didn't consider how challenging it would be for me to transition from high school to college, both academically and socially.
The homework debate has waged in America for decades. Do we give too much homework? Do we not give enough homework? This has spurred no homework policies initiated by teachers all the way to school administrators. Despite the wave of no-homework policies, the reality is that they are ineffective in battling student underachievement.
When I decided to get my MS degree a few years ago, I knew my hectic work schedule wouldn't allow me to take traditional classes. New to online learning at the time, I completed my degree in 2015 without ever stepping into a classroom. Read on for my biggest surprises while taking online classes.
There is a great debate amongst parents and educators alike about assigning homework over holiday breaks. There are definite benefits for students completing homework over winter break, especially when it is designed appropriately.
Homework has always been a controversial topic, but when it's assigned over the holidays, it can spark even more debate. Let's take a look at why holiday homework assignments are just not worth it.