Rosa Parks: Beyond the Bus

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Posted by Mrs. Wells | Posted in Civil Rights, Culturally Relevant Teaching, Teaching Ideas | Posted on 12/01/2015

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December 1st marks the anniversary of the bus boycott day led by Rosa Parks. This year is the 60th anniversary from that inspiring day of courage. In preparation for this day, Teaching Tolerance offered an outstanding webinar that I had the privilege to attend. This webinar provided me with excellent tools to implement in my classroom to teach to my students the importance of Rosa Park’s leadership in the Civil Rights movement.

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One of the key ideas that I took from this webinar, was that even though we recognize Rosa Parks as one of the leaders in the Civil rights movement, she did not act alone. There were a lot of other men and women that helped shape the movement. Among others, there were  Caucasian pastors and attorneys providing legal support and encouragement. The idea that is most relevant for the classroom though. is that it takes teamwork to accomplish a goal.

Some students sometimes believe that if they are not like a particular leader, they won’t be able to make any changes or to stand up for their what they believe in. The reality shows that big changes come from great leaders who are part of a group. So what the “Beyond the Bus” movement is trying to prove, is there are myths around the Rosa Parks’ story that need to be clarified. But above all, what I want my students to understand is that they don’t have to be politicians or rich and famous to promote action, or to be agents of change.

Rosa Parks was just a normal person, who was going home from work and by sitting down she stood up to change the world.

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Six strategies for closing the gap in Math

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Posted by Mrs. Wells | Posted in Teaching Ideas | Posted on 03/24/2015

Six Gap-Closing Classroom Math Strategies Infographic
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Book Review with a twist!

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Posted by Mrs. Wells | Posted in Book Reviews, Reader's Response, Teaching Ideas, Writing | Posted on 03/04/2015

Are you looking for a fun, more engaging way for your students to create book reports?
Check out this!

Scaffolding Reading to interact with complex texts

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Posted by Mrs. Wells | Posted in Teaching Ideas | Posted on 02/28/2015

The following video is an example of how to prepare students to interact with complex texts. The importance of scaffolding in this case with “focus questions”, provides students with a solid understanding of who they are learning about before moving on to why.

How are the Common Core standards aligned with 21st Century Skills?

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Posted by Mrs. Wells | Posted in Teaching Ideas | Posted on 01/13/2015

Paths to 21st-Century Success via the Common Core Infographic
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Close Reading: 10 Tips

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Posted by Mrs. Wells | Posted in Teaching Ideas | Posted on 12/12/2014

10 Tips for Close Reading Activities Infographic
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Got HOPE?

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Posted by Mrs. Wells | Posted in Book Reviews, Critical Thinking, Culturally Relevant Teaching, Global Education, Reader's Response, Teaching Ideas, Writing | Posted on 07/31/2014

 

Poetry for Hope is a book of poems written and illustrated by my 4th grade students. It was the product of a unit on poetry at the end of the year in the 4th grade class that I co-teach with another teacher.
We started by analyzing different poems and we soon realized how difficult it was for them to grasp the concept of metaphors. The poem that we were reading was about hope, which they did not know the meaning of, but the poet was comparing it to a bird. When it was time for them to write their own metaphors, they struggled because they did not know what hope was. We were using a metaphor to introduce the concept, but they did not know what the word’s meaning. Until I thought about connecting it to something that almost all of us in that class had in common (including the other teacher)… and that is: Immigration. So, picture this… two immigrant teachers teaching the meaning of hope to immigrant students! It was the most amazing teaching moment ever! So, that is how the book was developed.
We started off by asking: What does hope mean to you? before they wrote their own metaphors. We sat we them, one by one to bring out their personal experiences and feelings that most of them had never dealt with. It was an incredible experience to make them feel successful by sharing their own stories. Then, they started producing their metaphors; hope is…
We ended the unit with a presentation for parents, other teachers and students and school administrators. While we were guiding them in their writing, I immediately thought about a book, but I wanted it to be different, so I recorded their voices and created QR codes so you can scan and listen to them reading their poems too!
After finishing the presentation, I told them that we thought we were teaching them something, but instead they taught us a lot more! We learned not only the meaning of determination, resilience, family, but also why we do what we do!

Happy Earth Day

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Posted by Mrs. Wells | Posted in Global Education, Teaching Ideas | Posted on 04/22/2014

Why do we celebrate Earth Day every year on April 22? This infographic will take you to the past and back to the present while providing you with great details.


Earth Day graphic produced by the Kars4Kids car donation program "Responsible vehicle recycling for future generations

How to properly use apostrophes

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Posted by Mrs. Wells | Posted in Teaching Ideas, Writing | Posted on 04/04/2014

Apostrophes The Story of Bob and Muffin

by MKayMann.
Explore more visuals like this one on the web’s largest information design community – Visually.

Rules for Capital letter usage

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Posted by Mrs. Wells | Posted in Teaching Ideas, Writing | Posted on 03/28/2014

Common Rules for Capital Letter Usage

by grammar.net.
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