Probably the greatest advice we ever hear about preparing kids for high-stakes tests is that a strong curriculum is the best test prep there is. When children are reading and writing daily for long stretches of time, they are far more likely to be successful on an exam that tests reading and writing. There are two key considerations when planning a curriculum that supports success with ELA exams: time and level of text complexity.
Inexperienced writers often consider research a waste of time. Rather than reading books, watching a documentary, or talking to an expert, they prefer to dive into writing like a penguin chasing a sardine. The problem with this approach is that a writer may dash off a rousing first paragraph only to find she doesn't know enough about her topic to add even one more good line. Thoroughly investigating a topic can solve this problem — and do much, much more.
Welcome back to the Heinemann Professional Development Professional Learning Community (PLC) series. We hope you are enjoying our new format for the 2017-2018 year!
Each month, we share 2 posts designed to provoke thinking and discussion, through a simple framework, incorporating mini-collections of linked content into your professional development time.
This month, our posts will invite us to welcome curiosity, inquiry, and action for our classrooms and school communities.
The power of technology allows us to easily act on a connection with stories, supporting projects or organizations linked to meaningful causes. A simple scroll through social media allows you to hear a plea for help and give with a simple click of a button.
Think of any causes you supported in the past few years. Was it to grow research? Raise awareness? Crowdsource funding? Why did you make these choices? Did the story touch you? Have you or a family member found yourself in a similar position of need?
The following is adapted from Reimagining Writing Assessment by Maja Wilson
Good news: if you feel like you’re bashing your head into a brick wall as you try to make assessment work for you, generate data for the common district assessment, prep students for the SAT, and satisfy your institution’s accreditation mandates, take heart. It’s not you. Mainstream writing assessment tools are incapable of doing what we want them to do. That’s because the system that shaped these tools works at cross-purposes with our best intentions as knowledgeable teachers, invested writers, and compassionate human beings who teach for a more inclusive democracy. I desperately wish it were possible to simultaneously honor these intentions and appease the powers that be. The knowledge that you can’t serve two feuding masters, however, can be a relief.
In order to better determine how people really feel about math homework, Math in Practice lead author Sue O'Connell hosted an #elemmathchat Twitter chat in order to open up the discussion on math homework. In this Twitter Chat, O'Connell encouraged educators from across the country to let their memories associated with math homework be heard, fond or otherwise. Below, you can follow along with the conversation.
During the convention, all professional books on sale in the booth come with a 30% discount and free shipping. Even if you can't be at NCTE, you can still use the discount!
All ***online*** orders of professional books from November 17 until November 26 will receive the same discount off of the list price and shipping rate when you use code "NCTE17" at checkout (again: online orders only).