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Monday, 6 November 2017

Five Great 'Teacher Tips' Sites on the Web

By gppt. Education World introduces you to a few of the best "teacher tips" sites on the Web. In these sites you'll find hundreds of practical tips -- tried and tested tips from teachers willing to share. So sit back, get ready for a sampling of tips from these sites. (But remember, this sampling is just the "tip" of the iceberg.) Then explore the sites in more depth and find tips to motivate your students, organize your classroom, and much, much more! Nothing is more conducive to a peaceful and productive year for you and your students than successful classroom management. Classroom management, however, seldom depends on a solid grasp of educational content or on the originality of an integrated curriculum. It's usually a result of successfully dealing with the nitty-gritty -- the 1,000 small moments that arise throughout the day. No one knows more about successful classroom management than teachers who struggle with it on a daily basis. This week, Education World brings you the benefit of their experience as we explore six of the best "teacher tips" sites and sample the practical teacher-generated tips we found at each of them. Most of these sites offer you the opportunity to share your own ideas and tips, so be our guests! Join in the fun and make these great sites even greater! BUSY BEE ACTIVITY PAGE We begin our exploration at the Busy Bee Activity Page . This site, maintained by Canadian teacher Kevin Kearney, contains a number of teacher-tested activities you can use from the first day of school to the last. Tips are arranged within a number of topics and categories. Below is a sampling of the tips Kearney has compiled: First Day of School -- Another Time Capsule Idea. Have the kids write a letter to themselves. In that letter, have them describe how they feel about being in their present grade, what they think they will be learning during the year, who their "best" friends will be, what they would like [the teacher] to do during the year, and so on. Put the letters in a potato chip can and seal it. Reopen the can during the last week of school so students can reread their time capsule letters. Classroom Management Tips -- Open House Ideas. On each group of four tables, put a clear plastic cup containing a goldfish. After your opening remarks to parents, provide foot-long thermometers -- or whatever you have -- and tell the parents to take the temperature of the goldfish. This is a great ice breaker! (By the way, to get the fish temperature all you have to do is take the temperature of the water; the cold-blooded fish is the same temperature.) Elementary -- Portfolio Holders. Use large cereal boxes. Have each child cover and decorate the box with self-created artwork. Cover the artwork with contact paper. The box can be used throughout the year to hold paper projects, audiotapes, and videotapes. Computer -- Computer in the Classroom. Create a database with students' information. Include fields for first and last name, middle initial, phone number, parents' names, and so on. Once the information is in the database, it can be used to make desk tags, locker tags, birthday cards, certificates, labels for each student, report card comments, and on and on and on. When you're done reading other teachers' secrets on Kearney's site, click the bullseye to share your own! WORKS4ME TIP LIBRARY One of the most comprehensive sites we found for classroom management tips is the NEA's Works4Me Tips Library . Here, you'll find more than 400 archived tips from the NEA's Works4Me Classroom Tip of the Week, an e-mail message sent weekly to subscribers. Teacher-tested tips are organized into seven categories. On the Tips Library site, click on the following categories to read teachers' tips: Teaching Techniques. A first-day assignment I use with my students is to have them interview one another. After I start class with a mini lesson on asking questions and follow-up questions, I have them line up by birthday without talking, only communicating by hand signals. Then I split the line in two and have them pair up with a person across from them. They interview their partners and take notes. The next day I ask each student to bring in a picture, and the students introduce each other by reading the interview and posting it with the picture on the bulletin board. Getting Organized. To prevent a mix-up of puzzle pieces from different puzzles, I label the back of each puzzle piece and the box or puzzle tray with an identifying mark. For example, a puzzle of a kitten will have a K on each puzzle piece and also on the box. This helps me when children choose to work different puzzles on the same table and the pieces get mixed together. Managing Your Classroom. I've included a small picture of each child on my seating charts with tape under each for when I change seating. I staple a sheet of transparency film over the chart and can make notes on the transparency. This is also a great help for substitutes, who can quickly put the face and name together. Relationships. In the fall, we hold the traditional open house for parents to meet the teachers. One idea that has worked well for me is to videotape the students working on a project a few days prior to the open house. I keep the video short (four to five minutes) and make an effort to film every student at least three times. Parents love it, and my evening is far more relaxed spending part of each period narrating video rather than my presentation being the center of attention for the whole period. Using Technology. I've developed lesson plans for using newspaper editorial cartoons as a teaching tool in social studies, art, journalism, and English from elementary through high school. My husband, a syndicated cartoonist, created our Web site, which includes current cartoons from 24 editorial cartoonists.

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