When the stars align…

The Friday before break…this is an ominous four-word phrase that occasionally evokes a four-letter word from teachers, but today, the stars aligned for me in 6th grade (not 7th or 8th, but I’ll take what I can get)!!!!  I couldn’t believe it. The students were so incredible that I even gave them stickers (yes, middle schoolers…

Promethean Board Tips and Tricks!

Today’s post is going to be hit or miss.  If you don’t have a Promethean Board in your classroom, then you should bypass this post!!!! If you do have one, I hope that my experience can help you to use your board in the most effective way possible! To start, when you plug into your Promethean…

Culture and News with CI!

I LOOOOOVE using culture and news articles in my classroom.  I developed this skill during my 2nd year of teaching with CI.  Back then, I was TERRIBLE at asking TPRS stories and needed something different to keep myself and my students interested.  Thus, I started using news STORIES and cultural STORIES in the place of class…

Intentional Untargeted Teaching TAKE ONE!

  As a follow-up to what I learned and saw at CCFLT, I’ve been intentionally allowing my classes to have conversations that are completely untargeted and that follow the natural stream of conversation. For me, this has been extremely successful. Not only have students been focused and engaged, but it has also been fun for…

Free Voluntary Reading Set Up

After watching Paul Kirschling last year, I was inspired to figure out my own system for beginning Free Voluntary Reading. For me, this was extremely scary! Middle schoolers can be really reluctant to start something new, so I knew that I would have to set it up in a spectacular way in order to ensure…

A new twist on PQA!

Without a doubt, attending conferences makes me a better teacher. This weekend, I got a few strategies that I’m going to merge together to make one SUPER-LESSON to try out this week. Mira Canion presented about using a “lower” level question, ¿Cómo soy? (“What am I like?”) to be compelling for any level of learner. She modeled this…

My New CI Blog!

After talking with my former teaching partner and friend, CI teacher extraordinaire, Annabelle Allen, I am finally ripping off the band-aid.  I’ve been wanting to start a CI blog for years, so here I go.  Annabelle had a good point saying that I reflect all the time, try new things, and have epic fails (ok,…