Teacher Reflections

Category: Reading & Writing

Annotating for Critical Literacy

One simple way to teach students to critically examine texts from various lenses is to utilize targeted annotation techniques.  There are numerous guides for how to increase students’ comprehension by previewing texts, actively reading, summarizing, etc. One especially useful guide is from Susan Gilroy, Librarian for Undergraduate Writing Programs at Harvard University. Guides like this

Read More →

Rethinking the DBQ

Offering students productive diversity creates memorable learning experiences because they are tailored to students interests & needs. Productive diversity encourages learning activities in which students: are designers of knowledge work collaboratively to offer feedback differentiate the process & pace of learning reach similar but high goals I recently tried to offer English Language Learners productive

Read More →

Can blogs kill textbooks?

The textbook is a peculiar knowledge artifact according to Dr. Cope at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign: For efficiency’s sake, it summarizes the world; it is synoptic. There is no need for learners to discern what is more or less relevant knowledge, because this has been decided for them. One author or group of

Read More →

Strategies for Teaching Social Studies to ELLs

As we near the beginning of the school year, I thought it would be helpful for me to brush up on some strategies and develop a few more tools for the teaching toolbox this year. Below are some guides that I found helpful, see links below.  ELLs and Social Studies (NYU)  Analyzes difficulties with multiple

Read More →

Don’t (just) Write for your Teacher

Want students to write better? Have more clear organization and forceful arguments? Want them to proofread more carefully? Have them write for an audience: “When students were asked to write for a real audience in another country, their essays had better organization and content than when they were writing for their teacher. When asked to

Read More →