Social Emotional Learning

Raised hands

Promoting Classroom Conversation

Every single day we are tasked with ensuring that our students are entering into our building safely, that they are to learn wholeheartedly, and that they get to experience a wide variety of knowledge along the way. In doing this, as educators one of the pivotal roles we play is to promote classroom conversations. These …

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Young boy sitting atop a stack of books

Poetry: My Story

In 1994, my 6-year-old son Nicholas failed first grade. Testing revealed he could read ten words, showed no strengths, and had a low IQ. The prognosis was dire, his future bleak. Finally, the diagnostician called him: “The worst child I’ve seen in twenty years of teaching.” I had the option to remove my son from …

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Fairytale; social emotional learning

Reading Supports Social Emotional Learning

How reading helps children learn social emotional skills I am a lover of all things book and the written word. As a child, I was precocious and very curious. Thankfully, my father had a great passion for reading and ensured that I, along with my siblings, understood the importance of literacy and that it was …

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cover image of The Dot by Peter H Reynolds; this book helped improve culture at our school

Using Children’s Literature and Stories to Change Culture in Your School or Classroom

Using children\’s stories to bolster a sense of community connectedness and improve the culture at your school Imagine this… You are a classroom teacher or a counselor or a principal. You see and feel the culture of your learning community and note the need for a change. It is 2021 and people from all walks …

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illustration of a teacher coping with anxiety; Sharon Gaston Arlington Public Schools illustration

Why Teachers May Feel Anxiety Teaching Remotely or Hybrid During the Age of COVID-19

How technology and district pressure are ringing the anxiety bell for teachers COVID-19 has changed our education system in ways that very few people could have dreamed. Last spring, most schools in the United States closed their doors to thwart the spread of the deadly virus. This fall, some school systems opted for remote learning …

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Young woman teacher wearing sweater and glasses sitting at desk at kindergarten showing and pointing up with fingers number three while smiling confident and happy. New teachers info

The 3 Lessons First Year Teachers Learn Too Late

Nearly 50 percent of new teachers leave the profession within their first five years, according to the U.S. Department of Education. This is an alarming number! Many new teachers enter the profession with little support and even less knowledge about the workload being asked of educators. Here are 3 key lessons new teachers must learn …

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crying sad child - little girl face with tear on the cheek; normalizing emotions

Normalizing Emotions

Emotions. We all have them. We’ve felt the good, the bad, and the ugly. Happiness, sadness, anger, disappointment, guilt, love. Even though kids are small they can feel some huge emotions, and they should be normalized and discussed. Building a Support System Your child should feel safe to discuss emotions and feelings with family, friends, …

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stack of giant books with a ladder; pleasure reading & assigned reading

What is your Literary History?

Pleasure reading and assigned reading are not mutually-exclusive activities Have you ever taken pause to consider your personal literary history? I remember back to my senior year, an honors English class where I was asked to do this very exercise. It is remarkable how influential the very first pieces of text you consumed are. They …

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graphic novel

The Allure of the Graphic Novel

As your fairly typical “boy mom”, I can tell you I’ve seen just about every kind of graphic novel for kids. Long before my son discovered Marvel and DC superheroes, he found Captain Underpants, The Adventures of Dogman, and Diary of a Wimpy Kid, to name a few. Perhaps at first glance, graphic novels or …

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