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The day after Halloween, my Facebook feed exploded with posts about numbers. "I've written 5,200 words!" one friend exclaimed. Another claimed to have written 2,300. Someone else only had 1,500. And so on.  Continue reading...
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Okay, now that I've got your attention, let's talk hooks. In journalism we might call these leads, but the general concept is the same. Those first few lines are essential in catching your reader's attention, whether you're a novelist or a student writing an essay.  Continue reading...
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I'm going to let teachers in on a little secret. One of your best allies in top-notch instruction is your school librarian.

However, it always amazes me how many teachers fail to think of the librarian as a teaching partner.  Continue reading...
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In my column "The Dead Letter Classroom," I argued that we needed to be teaching students how to write letters. In this piece, I'm going to tell you specifically how I do it and how I use letters to teach English skills in a timely, relevant manner.  Continue reading...
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I used to be a personal journal person. Every January I would buy one of those 6x9 inch spiral wildlife calendars, the kind where you can see a week at a glance and have lots of space to write. At the end of each day, before I turned off my light, I'd scrawl in very tiny handwriting all my thoughts for the day. Sometimes I didn't say much. Other times I went into the margins or the white space below the pictures.  Continue reading...
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I'm an avid reader, and when I was little, I'd ride my bike down to the library bookmobile at the start of June and sign up for the summer reading program. Each week I'd read book after book, make the pilgrimage and watch my goal chart fill up with stars.  Continue reading...
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While English teachers are notorious for teaching the plot curve and its inciting incident, rising action and climax, etc., and while this is a great way to analyze literature, one of my most interesting sets of lessons involves leaving the plot curve behind and replacing it with the three-act structure most screenwriters and novelists use today.  Continue reading...
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2 3 4 5 6 Displaying 22-28 of 44 Articles