I know it’s only July, and I also know you’re probably already thinking about the fall. Today, let’s talk about a routine that helps successfully launch class Continue reading

Some of us aren’t even on summer vacation yet and folks are already talking about planning for next year. I know, I know… Still, two emails arrived this week asking which teacher planner I use, so here’s a quick video to explain how I save a fistful of cash each year. And if you’re not ready to think about any of this until August, I’m cool with that, too. Continue reading

Note: This is an updated repost featuring some of my favorite end-of-the-year lesson ideas.

You’ve wrapped your last major unit and final exams are still a week away. You could spend five days playing Review Jeopardy (uh…no, thanks) or you could grab some of these tried-and-true resources that’ll keep kids focused until finals. Continue reading

Warning: This post includes explicit language. If you’re not comfortable discussing curse words that appear in the texts our students read, you might want to skip this one. Continue reading

It’s late April. State testing is done (whew!), upperclassmen are ramping up for A.P. tests, and everyone’s just wrung out. How about we take a bit of time on an upcoming Friday and destress with this free poetry/coloring activity that’ll make all those hard-working moms out there feel good? Click the image to grab a […]

Today’s post starts in the kitchen. Like most normal people, I hate doing dishes. It’s gross and I’ve fought (and failed) for years to convince my husband and kids that their definition of “clean” is slacking…I mean, lacking. Hey, the job isn’t done until you’ve also wiped down the stove top, amIright? Continue reading

Sure, we know that Lord of the Rings, Hunger Games, and Harry Potter are modern examples of the Hero’s Journey, but there are a l-o-t of other popular films that also fit Joseph Campbell’s monomyth. A few that may surprise you: Continue reading

The man who created Roget’s Thesaurus, Peter Mark Roget, was born on January 18, 1779, a date loquacious scholars celebrate as National Thesaurus Day. (Thanks, Alex E., for the heads-up. I had no idea this was a thing.) Though my research failed to unearth the authority who had the power to make such a declaration, it seems like a nice thing to remember the retired doctor whose passion project helps us all sound a bit more erudite. Continue reading

This week’s drop of awesome comes from Cam Milleson, the blog’s middle school teacher friend in Kernville, California. Cam’s kids are working on a suspense narrative, so she built the following progress-tracker Continue reading

Note: If you’re looking for the pre-winter break Reindeer Race, keep reading to see how these materials can easily be adapted for any holiday/upcoming school vacation.

Two years ago, I shared my P.E. department colleagues’ inspired use of stations on the day before we left for Thanksgiving break. Here’s the video, in case you missed it:

Today, I’m adapting their idea to bring some holiday fun to our English/Language Arts classes. Continue reading