Many of us are starting the school year doing virtual classes. It is a tough situation – for a lot of reasons. I think the worst part is how difficult it will be to connect with my students. This blog post came out of a deep need for ways to build relationships during distance learning. It is also a sincere invitation to offer your own ideas that we can all benefit from.Continue reading “4 Ways to Build Relationships During Distance Learning”
With one simple Chrome Extension, you can easily turn any website into an interactive virtual lesson- in minutes! Highlight text, insert questions, initiate whole class discussion, include videos and even embed Google Forms! It is like a miracle, and I am hooked.Continue reading “Teaching Tool: Turn Any Website into an Interactive Virtual Lesson”
Teacher communication with parents and students is always important. Somehow, though, I imagine that this coming year communication will be even more essential. There will likely be (many) days that I do not see my students in person. Parents will need to be in close connection with the workings of the classroom and the school. I need a communication tool that can do…a lot.Continue reading “ClassTag: New Favorite Tool for Teacher Communication with Parents & Students”
Forensic Science is an awesome class. With topics like ballistics, blood, and dead bodies – it is almost hard to make it boring! But how do you start? What can a teacher do on the first day that hooks students and lays a solid foundation for the rest of the course?Continue reading “Ideas for the First Day of Forensic Science Class!”
Making this bitmoji virtual classroom for my students was so much fun! Google Slides makes it simple to create, and easy to share with my class. Here is a quick tutorial on how to make your own interactive virtual classroom!Continue reading “Make a Bitmoji Virtual Classroom with Google Slides”
Many teachers in the country are in the same boat right now. We are all searching for ways to engage and motivate our students from afar. Not an easy task!
My own principal keeps reminding us to focus on quality over quantity. Every assignment has to be worth the time to complete it (for the student) and to grade it (for the teacher). It must be both rich in learning and obtainable for students who have less support at home.
That is why I love this particular assignment idea so much – it does all these things and is adaptable to just about any subject.Continue reading “eLearning Project: Make a Gif With Google Slides”
If you are like me, you have spent hours trying out interactive biology websites, only to get frustrated and overwhelmed. Many of them are overly complicated, or require so many instructions that the message of the activity is lost to your students.
Compiled here are six of the best interactive biology websites. These online activities are well designed and easy for students to understand. Post includes tips for how to use the activities with your students.Continue reading “Six Best Interactive Biology Websites!”
You and I are probably in the same boat – trying to figure out how to take months of instruction and make it available to students for Remote Learning. There are many ways to do this, the learning curves of some ways are steeper than others! That is why I love Padlet. Padlet provides a simple and easy way to give students notes, videos, links, and instructions – with their responses – all in one place, and all online.Continue reading “Remote Learning Using Padlet to Teach Digital Lessons”
Can 21st Century Skills be used for classroom management in High School? Yes!
This is the third and final post in a series that explains how one teacher turned around the toughest class she has ever taught.Continue reading “Results! Classroom Management & 21st Century Skills”
Last week I was in Lowes Hardware and I found a bag of little skeletons for a price that I could not pass up. For years I have wanted to use little skeletons in Anatomy class to learn the bones and the major muscle groups! Now (near Halloween) is the perfect time to find skeletons at a good price!Continue reading “Skeletons, Play Doh and Muscle Groups!”
Using an Escape Room in the classroom is a super fun way to engage your students in any topic. But you do not need to spend countless hours making one, nor do you need to buy locks and boxes.
It is easy to turn (almost) any worksheet into an Escape Room!
We all want our students to learn from their mistakes. Tests are not just a grade, but a measure of where student understanding is. We want to help fill in the gaps, which usually includes going over the test or test corrections.
But what is the best way to do test corrections? I was searching for a way that truly helped students learn from their mistakes, but did not take up a lot of time. I needed a test correction method that was meaningful, and motivated even hard-to-motivate students.
And I found it!Continue reading “Best Way to do Test Corrections: Simple & Engaging”
We have all been waiting, and the day has finally arrived – access to the new AP Biology 2019 Course and Exam Description! What does this new curriculum mean for AP Biology teachers next year? Will we be spending summer break re-making our entire course?Continue reading “The New AP Biology 2019 Curriculum Resources”
As the school year is winding down, do your students seem to be more wound up each day? They are excited to begin summer, but you don’t want them to check out on you too soon. Use just a few of these ideas to make those last weeks of school the best weeks of the year – for both you and your students!
As a teacher, I am always on the look out for interesting, engaging (free) resources and activities for my students. Here is a list of my favorite eight to teach forensics!
Resources cover Evidence Basics, Arson Investigation, Blood Spatter, Anthropology, Autopsies and more! All free and available online.
Being a new teacher can so overwhelming! If you are a new teacher, be encouraged, we all felt the same way that first year.
You have come so far already, you have a lot to celebrate!
Next quarter is a chance to grow just a bit more. Take what you are already doing well, and with just a few simple changes, make it great!
And no topic in Forensic Science has more ‘yuck’ than the study of dead bodies. Students look forward to this unit all year! They are never disappointed.
Reading, hearing, and seeing pictures about Autopsies just doesn’t cut it. Students need hands-on experience to really learn and appreciate the work of Forensic Medical Examiners.
But murder victims are had to come by for use in the classroom!
So in my forensic science class, we use Rats. This post is all about how to turn a Rat into a murder victim!
I often feel overwhelmed by piles of student work. While I use Google Forms for quick and frequent formative assessment, multiple choice does not show the depth of student knowledge (or misconceptions) that you need to know in order to help your students.
Giving assignments that require reflection and critical thinking are crucial for student understanding and growth. The only trouble is grading those assignments! They are so time consuming!
But they don’t all have to be. Here are a few quick tweaks you can make to assignments you already have that will lead to both greater learning and save time grading!
This post is the second in a series that began with a desperate need to adjust my classroom management approach.
I was losing control of my classroom.
After five years of teaching with little or no classroom issues, I was now facing the toughest group of students I have ever had the challenge of teaching.
My struggle led to a system that,
- holds students accountable
- tracks growth for those hard-to-measure 21st Century Skills (collaboration, communication, and conduct)
- completely changed the behavior of this group of students and saved my sanity!
The class was at the end of the day, they were tired from being at school for eight hours and just wanted out. Students consisted of mostly boys who were best of friends and loved to goof around, with no regard for me or the other students in the room.
All of my usual classroom management methods and relationship building was just not working and I could clearly see this class was slipping out of control.