Heinemann Digital Campus

Teaching Tips

  • Let Reluctant Readers Go to the Dogs

    Although everyone knows that kids and dogs are a winning combination I (as a former teacher of English and professor of teacher education specializing in literacy development) initially expressed skepticism that dogs trained to assist children with reading could help them become better readers. But then I learned about research-based international organizations, such as Reading Education Assistance Dogs program for registered therapy dogs.
  • Say It With a Font! Students Create Fonts to Add Mood, Meaning to Writing

    Have you ever thought about where fonts come from? They’re just on your computer, right? But, how do they get there and who created them? Is it possible to make your own?
  • Kindergarten Strategies to Meet Everyone's Standards

    I would like to address how all kindergartners can learn the alphabetic principle (sound to letter correspondences and vice versa) in the easiest (developmentally appropriate) manner, so it will transfer to writing and reading. The alphabetic principle is a critical important reading standard and foundational skill kindergartners must learn if they are to be writers and readers.
  • Six-Word Memoirs in the Classroom

    Together, we came up with a list of how they might use six-word memoirs with the students they came to know and care about over the course of the semester, and how they imagine using six-word memoirs with students they have not yet encountered.

  • Don't Tell Me Kindergartners Can't Do That!

    In today’s era of pacing guides and continuums developed to complete a set number of skills in a set number of meetings—regardless of developmental milestones—kindergarten teachers are faced with the ongoing internal debate of what is appropriate for 5-year-olds and what is expected.
  • The Why and How of Writing Groups

    Each semester, when I announce to my students that they will be in writing groups, I see the same fearful eyes and frustrated faces.
  • Keeping Those Creative Juices Flowing

    After recently finishing another round of standardized testing, as well as too many district-required assessments that mimic the standardized tests, I am inclined to look for additional ways to make assessments more meaningful and engaging for my students.
  • Unlocking the Power of Informational Text: 5 Creative Ideas for Motivating Students

    The Common Core Standards call for a substantial increase in the sheer volume of informational texts students read. This means we need to put into action creative ideas for motivating and encouraging all our students to read more of the "real" genre.
  • Song Lyrics Remixed: A New Twist On an Old Trick

    For decades, teachers have incorporated song lyrics into their instruction. Most often, the intent with song lyrics is to "analyze meaning." But what hasn't already been done with song lyrics? Here is a new twist on an old trick.
  • Digital Storytelling Projects Help Improve Reading and Writing

    Every year I research new technological trends that may benefit pupils in K-12 classrooms. This year, one of my topics is digital storytelling.
  • My Favorite Kind of Meeting: Individual Conferences in Action

    My favorite kind of meeting is the individual kind that happens between teacher and student during your writing block...
  • The IT Crowd: Student Tech Leaders Support Innovation and Build Literacy Skills

    This team, the RQMS Student Tech Leaders, is the first of its kind in our district and helps to facilitate current technology integration efforts in our school.