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ELA Blog - English Language Arts Resources for the Classroom

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Literacy

Learning Transformed: 8 Keys to a NEW 21st Century School Design [Free Graphic Organizer]

Learning Transformed: 8 Keys to Designing Tomorrow's Schools Today by Eric C. Sheninger and Thomas C. Murray is a MUST READ for educators. In this...

Erin Lynch

Vocabulary

ACT/SAT Test-Taking Strategies: Pre-assess & Differentiate Vocabulary Learning

After 13+ years teaching high school English, I've concluded that ACT and SAT test-taking strategies are more successful when educators make...

Vocab Gal

Vocabulary

A Guide to Reviewing Vocabulary Terms Before High-Stakes Testing

In this article, you'll explore the benefits and rationale for teaching and reviewing vocabulary strategies as part of high-stakes test preparation!...

Vocab Gal

Vocabulary

Simple Direct Vocabulary Instruction Strategies that Work (Proven Tips/Techniques by Vocab Gal)

In this post, readers will form a true understanding of how to successfully integrate all of the important aspects of direct vocabulary instruction...

Vocab Gal

Literacy

Components of Balanced Literacy and Strategies for the Classroom

The methodology that I use to teach reading is "Balanced Literacy." Many of my blog posts refer to "Balanced Literacy" as I share units, lessons, and...

Erin Lynch

Vocabulary

How Word Parts and Context Clues Strategies Can Help Students Become Better Test Takers

So often, teachers tell students to figure out what a word means based on its word parts or on surrounding context clues, but I rarely know how to...

Vocab Gal

Vocabulary

ESL Valentine's Day Lesson for Vocabulary Learning, Grades 1–12

Valentine's Day is approaching and offers teachers with the opportunity to link ESL students' interest in the calendar holiday with vocabulary...

Vocab Gal

Vocabulary

8 Strategies for Teaching ELL Students Vocabulary Words

I have been friends with each of the three English Language Learner (ELL) teachers that have served my district since I began teaching, but I...

Vocab Gal

Literacy

10 Ways Teachers/Principals Can Celebrate Student Success

Most education professionals would agree that the job of “teacher” includes many other roles and responsibilities in addition to that of “instructor.”...

Erin Lynch

Grammar

3 Easy Ways to Support Grammar Instruction School-wide

Recently, I had a hallway conversation with colleague who asked me, "Does grammar even matter anymore?" My initial reaction was, "Of course, grammar...

Tiffany Rehbein

Vocabulary

How to Be Successful Mentoring New Teachers

As the "mentor coordinator" for my entire district, I have learned much by observing and working alongside mentors and beginning teachers. My role as...

Vocab Gal

Vocabulary

Vocabulary Assessment and Inventory

One of the most important aspects of vocabulary instruction is vocabulary assessment. Without knowing how many words your students already know, and to...

Vocab Gal

Vocabulary

An Awesome SAT and ACT Comparison for Teachers and Students

I will never forget driving to my SAT exam early one Saturday morning; I had the radio blaring classical music while I crunched peppermints and...

Vocab Gal

Literacy

3 Summertime Professional Development Topics for Teachers & Principals

The summer is a great time to enhance skills, improve units and add to professional knowledge. During the school year, teachers and principals are...

Erin Lynch

Literacy

8 Ways to Become a Literacy-Savvy Principal

Principals are the pillars of schools. Teachers, students, parents, custodians, paraprofessionals, and the lunch staff turn to principals for guidance...

Erin Lynch

Vocabulary

7 Teacher PD Opportunities to Take Advantage of this Summer

I can still remember the summer after my first year of teaching. My roommate, a fellow high school English teacher, and I literally sat on the couch...

Vocab Gal

Vocabulary

The BIG THREE of Teacher Feedback

Every year I like to take a moment, usually during the last week of school when I just can’t grade another paper, to reflect on what worked and didn’t...

Vocab Gal

Literacy

How Principals and Specialists Can Get Feedback from Teachers

Let's be honest, asking for feedback from colleagues is not the easiest thing to do. I find myself to be my own worst critic, so I do not know why I am...

Erin Lynch

Grammar

How Professional Development Can Support Writing Communities in Schools

Professional development days are my favorite! How often do school leaders hear teachers in their schools say this? In this blog post, you will learn...

Tiffany Rehbein

Vocabulary

Team-Building Activities for High School Students

Over the last two years, my colleagues and I have started playing board games during lunch. Not only does this provide us with much needed stress...

Vocab Gal

Literacy

How Literacy Coaches Can Help Teachers Use Picture Books Across Subject Areas

Most school districts are pushing to have a topic that is covered across the curriculum. When you are able to work on a topic in reading, writing,...

Erin Lynch

Grammar

How to Build a School Writing Community Around Shared Values–A FREE Step-by-Step Guide

In my post "Writing Communities in Schools: School-wide Literacy Action Plans," I wrote that shared value systems must be one of the first elements in...

Tiffany Rehbein

Vocabulary

How to Make Vocabulary Improvement and Instruction a Whole-School Endeavor

Students attend multiple classes every day and often don’t connect ideas or concepts from one class to another. By bringing students’ attention to...

Vocab Gal

Grammar

Writing Communities in School; Creating a School-wide Literacy Action Plan

In this article, we'll explore the benefits of building a school-wide community of writers and literacy action plan. With the strategies outlined in...

Tiffany Rehbein

Vocabulary

How to Balance Being a Teacher and a Parent: Top 5 Survival Tips

Many of us struggle to balance our personal and professional lives, and I found that for me it only got harder once I had children. I knew I was going...

Vocab Gal

Literacy

My New Year’s Resolution Worksheet for Educators

As an educator, I’ve always appreciated that the second semester of school kicks off right after the New Year’s celebrations. It inspires me to reflect...

Erin Lynch

Vocabulary

10 High Stakes Assessment Terms Students Need to Know

If you read last week’s post, you know that your vocabulary instruction is most critical to your students’ success on high-stakes testing. Unfamiliar...

Vocab Gal

Vocabulary

Increase High-Stakes Standardized Testing Success with Vocabulary

High-stakes standardized testing is not going away. With the newly redesigned SAT® and the fact that many states’ are focusing on both the ACT® and...

Vocab Gal

Grammar

A Principal's Role in the Professional Development of Teachers

Every Sunday, I participate in professional development on Twitter. It’s not sponsored by my school. I didn’t have to sign-up early. My principal...

Tiffany Rehbein

Vocabulary

3rd Grade Vocabulary Worksheets, Printables, and Resources

Today I'm sharing 3rd grade vocabulary worksheets and printables that will make the word building process more exciting for students! These free...

Vocab Gal

Literacy

Teacher Goal Setting and Professional Planning for the New Year

The start of the school year in most school districts means it is that time of year to set teacher professional goals again. Ugh! I used to find this a...

Erin Lynch

Grammar

How Literacy Coaches Can Support Teachers in Teaching ACT Test Prep

Many people like surprises. With the end of summer vacation, a surprise might be waiting for teachers at their school in the form of ACT®* scores. For...

Tiffany Rehbein

Grammar

Recharge and Refresh: 5 Ways Teachers Can Stay Motivated

July is the month that marks the middle of summer for many teachers. Last month school had just ended and next month school will begin again. Before...

Tiffany Rehbein

Grammar

8 eBooks That Will Improve Your Writing & Grammar Instruction

Summer break is a great time for teachers and principals to participate in professional development. Today I'm sharing eight eBooks teachers can...

Tiffany Rehbein

Literacy

Four Books Effective Principals and Teachers Should Read this Summer

As you prepare for your summer break, I know many of you are thinking about what professional texts you might like to read. The possibilities are...

Erin Lynch

Vocabulary

Top 3 Tips to Survive the First Week of School

School is back in session! At the beginning of the school year it’s easy to let yourself get overwhelmed with all the planning and prep. You’ve spent...

Vocab Gal

Vocabulary

Top 5 Secrets to Making the Most of a Education Conference

I’m so excited to go to NCTE this year. As I began thinking both about my own preparations for NCTE and helping my mentee teacher Caitlin prepare for...

Vocab Gal

Vocabulary

Top 3 Mistakes (New) Teachers Make

A few weeks ago, I shared my favorite pieces of advice for new teachers, but my advice was applicable to all teachers, not just those starting out. In...

Vocab Gal

Vocabulary

Back-To-School: Advice To New Teachers

Another school year means new teachers, and we have many both at my school and in my district this year.  I am asked each year to mentor new...

Vocab Gal

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