The ultimate tool for teaching students poetry

The ‘Poetry Power Pack’ is the complete solution for teaching and learning poetry in an elementary / primary classroom. 

This unique bundle of poetry resources and media is housed within a single PowerPoint presentation and contains a huge amount of resources for 19 styles of poetry including... 

Acrostic, Ballads, Clerihew, Diamante, Epitaph, Free Verse, Haiku, Irish Limerick, Monody, Monorhyme, The Ode, Palindromes, Pantoum, Quatrains, Shape Poetry, Concrete Poetry, Sonnets and Villanelle.

For each style of poetry you will find.
Visually driven and informative teaching guides which appeal to students.
Annotated and narrated poetry samples by a professional voice actor.
Quality external Learning links and resources.
Individual professionally designed templates to download and print in either grayscale or color.
Poetry Assessment Rubric to guide students in writing high quality poetry.
Curriculum links including the Common Core.

*Absolutely no preparation required - This is a perfect resource for both full time and substitute teachers alike.

This resource has taken over ten years to compile and refine to the point it is now. It has been used by teachers around the world in various formats and is now available for the first time as a complete solution to teaching poetry in your classroom in an engaging and professional manner.

There is over three weeks of continuous work which can either be directed by a teacher or students can learn independently at their own pace. In most cases you would use this frequently throughout the entire school year.

The entire collection is provided to you in both the original PowerPoint format and also as a printable PDF ebook to best suit the needs of students and teachers.


This bundle goes above and beyond what you would expect of any other PowerPoint presentations and Poetry bundles currently available on Teachers Pay Teachers and will not disappoint you.

Ensure you meet Common Core Standard 10 for grades one through five. ( "by the end of the year, students should be able to read and comprehend literature including POETRY." ) though the use of this Poetry Unit. 

Access the Poetry PowerPack here

YouTube for Kids launches to make the net a little more family friendly

Today YouTube launched YouTube for kids.  In the United States anyway, but we are assured the rest of the world will come on board soon.

As a teacher and a parent this is a real win for kids aged under twelve who Google have targeted this new app at on iOS and Android.

It contains a mixture of syndicated material such as sesame street and select user generated content.  Furthermore, it has features designed to make parents feel comfortable about leaving their children to use YouTube such as the ability to turn off the ability to search and specifically play educational material only.

This may be useful for teachers who wish to allow their students to view content as part of a study of digital literacies as they can really filter the content and options through the settings on the app.

From a business perspective this definitely allows Google to zoom in on a specific audience but we all know that there is no such thing as a free feed, especially on the internet.

This video below from Tanya Awith demonstrates some practical ideas oh how you can use this new app in your classroom.


Teaching the vocabulary of Charlie and the Chocolate factory

Learning Intention / Overview

Understanding vocabulary in a text aids students in understanding events and concepts in a story.  Using context clues from stories also ensures that students look closely at text and examine word meanings. Once students comprehend vocabulary they are better able to make connections in text and in conclusion better understand the story.  This lesson will also provide students with the opportunity to practice using a thesaurus.

Methods / Teaching Strategies

  •  Group work
  •  Understanding Context Clues
  • Thesaurus Practice
  •  Personalized Learning

Assessment of Learning

·         Vocabulary Sheet (provided)

Click here to download the free lesson plan

How to use the Google Research Tool to improve Essay Writing

Whilst the Google research tool has been a part of Google drive for a few years now  It amazes me how few teachers and students are aware of what it can do.

In short the research tool is the perfect accomplice for writing an essay or creating a project.  It will not only provide you with all the facts and answers you require but also cite them.  And that's just the beginning.

I have put together this six minute video tutorial to make every student and teacher an expert around getting the most out of using the Research tool but also assist teachers in identifying work that has basically been written entirely from this tool.

I forgot to mention in the video that this applies to Google Docs, Slides and Sheets.

Please leave any thoughts or suggestion on this below.

 

20 fun ideas to bring Halloween to your classroom

Photo by Brand X Pictures/Stockbyte / Getty Images
Photo by Brand X Pictures/Stockbyte / Getty Images

Over the last fortnight we have been adding a number of resources to help teachers and students have some fun in the classroom with Halloween.  

Recently we have been compiling theme pages of resources for major events throughout the year and soon enough we will be putting all of our Christmas resources in a single place also.

The key word here is fun, but there is plenty of learning opportunities to take advantage of, especially around literacy art and craft.

So if you are looking for some fresh and simple ideas this spooky season be sure to check out our halloween resources here.

20 spooky writing prompts for Halloween

Halloween is a great time of year to showcase your writing skills.  Literally anything goes, fact, fantasy, horror and mystery.  What is there not to love if you are a young writer who is full of great ideas?

Sometimes those ideas are not as easy to find for some, so we have put together twenty writing prompts to cover both fiction and non fiction aspects of writing.

If you have any other suggestions or ideas we would love to hear them in the comments section below.  Enjoy.

  1. Write a spooky story to tell around the campfire. Remember, you want to build suspense and fear within your audience.. Don’t forget to have a big climax to scare everyone who is listening.

  2. The best Halloween costume I ever wore was…

  3. Write a recipe for a magic potion. Next, explain what the potion would do if someone drank it.

  4. It was a dark and stormy night when….

  5. Describe how to make a great Halloween costume using mostly supplies you have around the house.

  6. You are about to throw the best Halloween party in history! Describe your preparation, the event itself, the aftermath, and the cleanup. Did you enjoy yourself? Did your house almost destroy the street?

  7. Write a poem about ghosts. Make each line of the poem start with g, h, o, s, t and s

  8. Explain your most memorable Halloween of all time: from the treats you received, the costume you wore, the environment of your neighborhood (if you trick or treated) and why it was so amazing.

  9. I was counting all my candy when all of a sudden…

  10. The mad scientist was creating a new monster that could…

  11. Funny now, but not then? Share a frightening experience that you can look back on and laugh about... now that it's over.  

  12. Write a story about a kid who goes trick-or-treating. Start from the minute he or she puts on his or her costume and finish when he or she gets home and put on normal clothes again. Tell me everything that happens.

  13. Write a ghost story. It can be one you have personal experience with or completely fictional.

  14. Something in the closet was making a strange noise, so I opened the door and…

  15. You won’t believe this story, but it is true…

  16. If you could design a haunted mansion, what would you name it? What types of rooms would you have? Describe, in detail the best rooms in your haunted house.

  17. Everybody said the old Warwick mansion was haunted…..

  18. The zombies staggered through my front lawn…..

  19. Do you think our modern Halloween traditions still have value? Why or why not?

  20. A film company is sponsoring a nationwide Halloween script-writing contest. Write a brief summary of your prize winning movie plot.  

 

20 great persuasive essay topics for students

persuasive essays

Writing an effective persuasive essay demonstrates a range of skills that will be of great use in nearly all aspects of life after school.

In essence, if you can influence a person to change their ideas or thoughts on a given topic though the manner in which you structure your words and thoughts you possess very powerful skill.

Be careful not to rant wildy.  Use facts and other peoples ideas who think similarly to you in your essay to strengthen your concepts.

Your biggest challenge in getting started may well be choosing a suitable persuasive essay topic.  These 25 ideas should make this process a little easier.

If you have any other suggestions please add them below.

  1. WHY ARE WE FASCINATED WITH CELEBRITIES AND WEALTHY PEOPLE ON TELEVISION AND SOCIAL MEDIA?

  2. IS IT RIGHT FOR SCHOOLS TO RAISE MONEY BY SELLING CANDY AND UNHEALTHY FOODS TO STUDENTS?

  3. SHOULD GIRLS BE ALLOWED TO PLAY ON BOYS SPORTING TEAMS?

  4. IS TEACHING HANDWRITING A WASTE OF TIME IN THIS DAY AND AGE?

  5. SHOULD THERE BE FAR GREATER RESTRICTIONS AROUND WHAT CAN BE POSTED ON THE INTERNET?

  6. SHOULD PROFESSIONAL ATHLETES HAVE TO TAKE DRUG TESTS?

  7. ARE TEENAGE PREGNANCY SHOWS A NEGATIVE OR POSITIVE INFLUENCE UPON VIEWERS?

  8. SHOULD GAMBLING BE PROMOTED IN ANY WAY IN SPORTS EVEN THOUGH IT BRINGS IN LARGE AMOUNTS OF REVENUE?

  9. SHOULD SPORTING TEAMS THAT LOSE BE REWARDED BY RECEIVING INCENTIVES SUCH AS HIGH DRAFT PICKS AND / OR FINANCIAL BENEFITS?

  10. SHOULD SHARKS THAT ATTACK PEOPLE BE DESTROYED?

  11. SHOULD WE GET INVOLVED IN FOREIGN CONFLICTS AND ISSUES THAT DON’T DIRECTLY AFFECT OUR COUNTRY?

  12. COULD VIDEO GAMES BE CONSIDERED AS A PROFESSIONAL SPORT?

  13. IF YOU WERE THE LEADER OF YOUR COUNTRY AND HAD A LARGE SURPLUS TO SPEND WHAT WOULD YOU DO WITH IT?

  14. WHEN SHOULD A PERSON BE CONSIDERED AND TREATED AS AN ADULT.

  15. SHOULD SMOKING BECOME AN ILLEGAL ACTIVITY?

  16. SHOULD THE VOTING AGE BE LOWERED?

  17. DOES PROTECTIVE PADDING IN SPORT MAKE IT MORE DANGEROUS?

  18. SHOULD CELL PHONES BE ALLOWED IN THE CLASSROOM?

  19. IS TEACHING A FOREIGN LANGUAGE A WASTE OF TIME?

  20. SHOULD WE TEACH ETIQUETTE IN SCHOOLS?

Common Application Essay Topics for 2014 -2015

Transient

The Common Application Group is a non profit committed to to providing reliable services that promote equity, access, and integrity in the college application process.

Every two years they release a set of essay prompts that can be accessed by prospective students to be submitted alongside a college application to give schools an idea of the quality of candidate they are considering.

This is a great opportunity for senior students to complete a common writing task that may well be useful for them in further education opportunities.

The word limit is capped at 650.  It is very difficult to write an excellent essay with such a short word limit so every word needs to count.

The common prompts for 2014 and 2015 are

These three tips may help you if you are stuck for inspiration.

  • Some students have a background or story that is so central to their identity that they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.   

  • Recount an incident or time when you experienced failure.  How did it affect you, and what lessons did you learn?

  • Reflect on a time when you challenged a belief or idea.  What prompted you to act? Would you make the same decision again?

  • Describe a place or environment where you are perfectly content.  What do you do or experience there, and why is it meaningful to you?

  • Discuss an accomplishment or event, formal or informal, that marked your transition from childhood to adulthood within your culture, community, or family.

  • Brainstorm some of your favorite memories. Why have these stuck with you? What do they mean to you and what do they say about who you are? Do you see a theme running through them?
  • When writing about these memories, describe them in as much detail as possible. What color was the shirt you were wearing? Was it raining outside? How did you feel? The more you remember the more it means to you.
  • Most importantly, be honest with yourself. Don’t write about what you think the college admissions board wants to hear. Write about something you really feel strongly about. Your passion and true self will shine through. That is what they want to see.