Children encompass unlimited potential and capability. Students thrive in nurturing environments where they are presented with opportunities to develop critical thinking skills and social emotional development. However, without a nurturing environment,  children will miss opportunities to develop critical thinking skills and social emotional development. Here are a few ways to support authenticity wit...

I’ve always disliked the term scaffolding.  At first I thought it was because it was associated with Lev Vygotsky.  I had never heard of the guy and then suddenly I was supposed to answer an essay question about him on my master’s degree comprehensive exam!  However, after passing the exam, I realized the concept of scaffolding bothered me for another reason.  The definition was easy enough to underst...

​​​​In a new book called Stop. Right. Now.: 39 Stops to Making School Better by Jimmy Casas and Jeffrey Zoul it says, “The most effective way to ensure kids are prepared for the next level is to prepare them thoroughly at their current level.”  I agree completely with this statement.  At a time when we are encouraged to move faster and get farther, we need to slow down and look at what is really best...

I used to chew my fingernails when I was a little girl, but luckily, I broke myself of the bad habit.  I realize I also had some bad habits when I was a classroom teacher.  In particular, two problematic areas come to mind as I reflect on best practices in early childhood education.

My first bad habit was giving students empty praise.  When we say “good job” and “way to go,” we think we are buildi...

With the holiday season wrapping up, there are many items that made each child's wish list. However, books are a valuable gift that can enrich a child's life year round. Books can also provide several learning opportunities to support early literacy such as language development, print awareness, and increased vocabulary. 

According to NAEYC, "Children who have lots of experiences with bo...

"When students talk, they think. Talking provides students with practice with the language and an opportunity to clarify their understanding in the presence of their peers. As students talk, teachers gain a greater understanding of students’ mastery of the subject matter. But talk does not just happen. Teachers have to establish purposes for the classroom talk, provide scaffolds such that the talk rem...

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Training Spotlight

1st-3rd grade educators worked together to learn engaging ways to develop number sense. Students will develop fact fluency while playing games that use their number sense strategies. By learning their facts in this way, students are not merely memorizing, but rather learning to work with numbers flexibly.  “Low achievers are often low achievers not because they know less but because they don’t use numbers flexibly – they have been set on the wrong path, often from an early age, of trying to memorize methods instead of interacting with numbers flexibly.” Jo Boaler,  Stanford University, 2009

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April 8, 2019

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