Science in the City

Feb 1, 2013

Super TPT Sale

Teachers Pay Teachers is having a Sunday SUPER Sale. You will get 10% off sitewide, and most sellers are offering additional percentages off, up to 28% off site-wide.  You only need to use the promo code SUPER.

At my store (and many others) the sale prices are extending into Monday as well!

Spend a few minutes on Saturday to fill up your wishlist.  Look at your upcoming units and buy what you need now, while its discounted.

Or maybe you have been thinking about checking out the site, but haven't yet?  Looked at free items, but haven't purchased yet?  Now is your chance.

Enjoy the superbowl, and save yourself some planning and writing time later on!!

Jan 31, 2013

6 Ways School is Like Working Out

I had surgery on my shoulder last May.  At the time, I couldn't work out for 4 months afterward.  In an effort to save money, I cancelled my gym membership.  Then, I rode my bike some at the end of the summertime, and did some hiking.  Once it got cold, and school started back up, I did almost no exercise. I know I should, but between being busy, tired, not having the didn't happen.  I tried a few times, and didn't stick with it, even though it felt good when I was doing it.

Last weekend I bought a new workout video, on a great sale.  Then I got sick.  I first used it today.  Afterwards, I had a thought.  My working out (or lack of), is very similar to my students work habits.  They haven't yet established the habits to be successful in school.  They want to, and are proud of themselves when they turn in homework, or do well on an assignment, but can't sustain it.

So what can we do to help them sustain these behaviors long enough to become habits??

What other things help people develop new habits:

  • We have to motivate them to want that change-- engaging lessons, connections to real life, goals, etc
  • We have to provide lots of positive reinforcement
  • Make it an enjoyable experience
  • Provide support for them to succeed (help with homework, flexibility)
  • Make these efforts sustained - it takes a long time to develop new habits.
  • Keep this analogy in mind. I think its easy for us, as teachers, to think that once we've told kids something, or by the time they are a certain age, they should have school habits well established....maybe not.  Remember how hard it is to learn something new.  
What if they don't?  What if they haven't been successful in learning these habits?  Or what if its not something that is reinforced at home?

Jan 29, 2013

This is What It Looks Like When I Get Frustrated with Classroom Management

I have been having a lot of trouble with glue this year. I have done interactive notebooks for years, and never had the kind of problems that I've had this year.  The group of middle school kids that I have don't know how to use glue - they put TONS OF GLUE, then when they close their book it oozes out, pages stick together, and the page they glued is all wrinkled and wet.

I have tried to demonstrate, I have gotten frustrated and yelled, I have designated students to go around and glue.  Some worked better than others, but the problem is still not straightened out.

Friday we really spent sometime getting our notebooks set up for the next unit (I figured we'd get the glue issue out of the way all at once).  I was so frustrated.  I kept thinking "My six year old can do this!"

Then I had an idea....videotape my 6-year-old showing them how to do it.  He heard my complaining and said "I could show them how to do it"

I'll let you know how it goes. I think it might be crazy enough to actually work!  What do you think?

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