Visit our Website at: www.starteaching.com

Ideas and Features For New Teachers 
and Veterans with Class

Volume 3, Issue 14

July 2007


Our Back-To-Back, Back-To-School Issues
Packed with excellent articles on getting yourself and your students back into school mode! 

Remember to bookmark this page and to visit our website for more great articles, tips, and techniques!

Also, feel free to email this newsletter to a friend or colleague!  

SQ3R Sheet
Check out our NEW FREE online resources, including the SQ3R sheet for reading 
and the Paragraph Graphic Organizer for writing.  These are forms you can fill in online and print, or have your students fill them in and print them for class!

Paragraph Organizer

Would you be interested in becoming a Featured Writer for the StarTeaching website?

Our Newsletter is now posting a opening for a creative educator interested in designing a set of weekly problem solving activities for students and teachers to use.  

Email your resume and letter of interest to:  editor@starteaching.com

Designing and Running a Medieval Fair
(part 3)

By Frank Holes, Jr.
Middle School Teacher

Running large events, such as a medieval fair, at school is often too much for most teachers to attempt. However, with careful planning, and some well directed help, you can orchestrate a successful, educational, and memorable experience for your students.  This article, second in the series, describes how you can utilize the help of outsize sources.

Once the day is underway, your job becomes that of a facilitator. You'll want to move about checking on your students at each group or station. You'll also need to be available to help and support your guests with their needs. For example, our calligraphy station ran out of practice writing sheets, so one of the teachers had to go make copies. Be flexible, and always remember you're setting up a grand experience for the students. This becomes an example of servant leadership, where you and your fellow teachers are enabling the groups to succeed so the students succeed.

During the morning, we met our helpers and re-enactors and got them in place. Students were instructed ahead of time here they would go first, and what their rotation was. Once the day is underway, the teachers are free to move about, monitor the students and groups, and participate alongside the kids.

A little before lunch, one of our teachers began working with the school cooks to coordinate lunch. Our feast is always held in our gym alongside the activities. We try to plan a whole group activity (singing, dancing, games, etc.) in the 10-15 minutes before lunch so our stations can clean up and we can set up our feast tables. Depending on our overal set up, our feast is set up either in a long line or a traditional horseshoe shape. Set this up (in the background) while the students are engaged in another activity. This will keep them in the same train of thought and in the same location (it's not really authentic to immerse the kids in the middle ages only to bring them back to a modern day lunchroom).

You'll want a plan for your lunch line. We always make a point of feeding our volunteers first, followed by the girls (carefully observe the ideals of chivalry), and lastly the boys. We teachers eat once everyone has gone through the line.

After students are finished eating, we have another short sponge activity (dancing, singing, games, etc.) while we clean up the lunch tables and return the foodstuffs and equipment to the kitchen. This way again the students stay immersed in the activity while re-arrangement and cleaning occurs in the background.

Our afternoon resumes with more medieval festivities. Finish up your stations if necessary. This past year we had a community acting group put on a presentation of Robin Hood, and we invited our 5th and 6th graders to watch. This also gave the youngsters just a small teaser of what fun they'll have when they reach seventh grade.

All in all, a large scale event can appear to be too much work, and for an individual teacher, this may be accurate. However, for you brave souls who want to give your students an experience they'll remember forever, a lot of careful planning and a good team will enable you to pull off a first-class day. When we talk to former students, they rarely can tell us what they learned in any one of our class, but they remember in great detail the activities they participated in during the Medieval Fair. And those memories will be with them the rest of their lives.

Links you can use for more information:

The book of Goode Cookery:  http://www.godecookery.com/

Heraldry: http://www.ceu.hu/medstud/manual/SRM/index.htm

Myths and legends: http://www.mythiccrossroads.com/myth.htm

Building a castle: http://www.artsedge.kennedy-center.org/content/3701/

Etiquette:  http://www.lc.capellauniversity.edu/~135958/Medieval%20Banquet/Etiquette.htm

Medieval jobs:  http://www.castles-of-britain.com/castle32.htm

Simple medieval foods and recipes (found in the Book of Goode Cookery):

Blankmonger (also blanck-mong or blowmanger) - This is a creamy rice dish that can take on a number of flavors depending on the recipe you use (there are several).

Fruays -Apple/fruit fritters

Mackeroons - noodles and cheese. This is truly a precursor to modern day macaroni and cheese, and students love to make it and eat it.

Medieval gingerbread - made with highly seasoned bread crumbs and honey

Baked pears and fruits - its been the same for hundreds (or even thousands) of years


Looking for more ideas on writing?  See our website by clicking the following link:



Be sure to check out our website for more great information, tips, and techniques for new teachers, student-teachers, and interns in teacher prep programs. Also be sure to check out our Who-I-Want-To-Be teacher plan for preparing yourself to enter the educational profession.  Simply click the following link: http://www.starteaching.com/free.htm

Want to check out the articles in our Student-Teaching series?  Check out our special Student-Teaching page through the following link:  http://www.starteaching.com/studentteachers.htm


Do You Have Great Ideas, Tips, or Techniques to Share with Our Readers?  
Are You Looking To Be Published?

Submit Your Articles On Our Website At:   http://www.starteaching.com/submit.htm

And Be Sure to Check Out Our Online Chat & Message Board.  Sign Up At:



The Call for Small Class Sizes

By Mary Ann Graziani

Most teachers would agree that they prefer smaller classes to larger ones. This is no surprise since smaller classes are easier to manage, allow the teachers to cover more learning material, and provide daily feedback to students more easily. In smaller classes, it is easier for the teacher to pinpoint students who require remedial help and they have more time to adapt teaching strategies to a student’s individual needs.  

Most teachers would agree that they prefer smaller classes to larger ones. This is no surprise since smaller classes are easier to manage, allow the teachers to cover more learning material, and provide daily feedback to students more easily. In smaller classes, it is easier for the teacher to pinpoint students who require remedial help and they have more time to adapt teaching strategies to a student’s individual needs. 

According to an article in Education World, Charles M. Achilles, a professor of educational administration at Eastern Michigan University states, “Conclusive evidence has shown the benefits of class sizes of 1:15, especially in the primary grades.” Since the early 1980s, a large-scale project in Indiana, a major experiment in Tennessee, numerous smaller studies and evaluations of projects that use low adult-to-student ratios have found that youngsters in small classes (1:15 or so) as compared to youngsters in larger classes obtain higher test scores; participate more in school; demonstrate improved behavior; and retain many benefits of early class-size reductions in their later years of schooling (Hopkins, 1998). 

To address this problem there have been many class size reduction programs initiated in many schools throughout the nation. Today, however, with educational budget cuts in many states, there would not be enough money to fund class size reduction programs adequately. When student - teacher ratios are high, teachers are unable to meet the needs of all students and budget cuts make class size reduction programs impossible. 

There are solutions that are simple and require no money or commitment from anyone other than the teacher themselves. When used, they can make managing a large class more simple. 

Solution 1: Classroom management plan. When presented with a large group of students, the most important thing is to manage the classroom. There must be a way to gain the students attention immediately, without having to yell or shout. Rules, and consequences for breaking each rule, must be decided, posted, and strictly adhered to. Students can be involved in helping develop the rules and consequences. They can be decided together as a class on the first day of school. Consequences for each rule should be posted and followed each and every time the rule is broken. It is imperative that all students be held accountable for following the rules at all times. The teacher must be seen as fair. If even one student is allowed to “get away” with something, then the whole discipline plan falls apart and the teacher loses management of the class. When planning out rules and consequences, the teacher should include the administration in his/her ideas so they can help enforce the ! rules. Often, a school will have rules that apply to every student and teachers support each other by encouraging students to act within these guidelines. Hopefully, it will never come down to having to enforce rules. Dr. Harry Wong states “the number one problem in the classroom is not discipline; it is the lack of procedures and routines. . . A vast majority of the behavior problems in the classroom are caused by the failure of students to follow procedures and routines” (Wong, 1998). A teacher’s classroom management plan, therefore, must consist of how things are to be done in the classroom, starting from the moment they walk in the door. A procedure might be: walk in, put your backpack in your cubby, sit at your desk, and write a page in your journal. Eventually these procedures become habits and things will run smoothly. The first few weeks of school may require the teacher to “remind” students several times what the procedures are, but it will pay off in the long run ! (Wong, 1998). 

Solution 2: Encourage students to work independently. Students who work independently of the teacher are more successful. “The fact that the teacher does most of the work at school explains why there is little learning in school” (Wong, 1998). This is especially true when trying to teach a large number of students. A teacher will become exhausted trying to keep the kids in line and focused on a lecture. If, instead, the teacher gives students activities to work on; they learn more. They not only learn from each other, they learn by doing. This frees the teacher up to walk around and assist. “The research says that the person who does the work is the only one doing the learning” (Wong 1998). Students can act as “teacher assistants” by being given various jobs within the classroom. This will also help the students be more independent and responsible. Students may have jobs such as feeding the class pet, taking the attendance cards to the office, monitoring the clean up o! f toys, collecting homework, cleaning the chalkboard, etc. These jobs will give the students a sense of pride in their classroom, while taking some small but necessary tasks away from the teacher. 

Solution 3: Keep Parents Included: Give them copies of lesson plans, or form a calendar of main lesson topics, which they can follow (i.e. September topics: Johnny Appleseed, signs of fall, subtracting 3 digit numbers). Make sure parents are aware of special dates like conferences or open house. Invite them and make them feel welcome. One of our teammates keeps her lesson plans posted on the wall of her classroom, because parents are always asking what the topics of discussion are. Parents like to supplement the topics at home, and also send theme related show-and-tell items with their children. Parents and teachers working together is the best scenario for any child. A teacher should do all he/she can to keep parents in the loop with what is going on in the classroom. “Parents are their children’s first and most influential teachers” (Wong 1998). 

Another way to help parents stay involved is through weekly newsletter sent home on Fridays. This is a simple solution that a teacher can implement into their classroom. One easy way to manage the newsletter is to let the students design and write it. This is one way to give the gifted and talented students something that is educational and fun to work on. This will keep them from becoming bored and disinterested in the class. It will also give the teacher additional time to work with the students who may need extra help in various academic areas. 

An additional method of communication with parents is to set up a website where parents can log on and keep up daily with what is going on in school. Sometimes the newsletter will just sit on the counter all weekend and not be read. Parents, who work long hours, often have some free time at work where they check personal email or surf the web. If a teacher sets up a classroom website and keeps it updated, parents can keep abreast of school happenings. Also, this helps in divorced families, because both parents have a way of keeping up with what is going on in school. If a parent only sees their child every other weekend, they will appreciate a way to keep up with their daily lives. Maintaining a website is not difficult or time consuming. It may make a huge difference in the lives of your students. This is another area where students who are doing well academically can have a fun and have an educational project to work on. Allowing students to help maintain the website will provide the same benefits as students creating the newsletter, and additionally, will integrate technology into the curriculum. 

The benefits of creating a newsletter and website will provide a method of communication for the parents, so they can keep track of what is going on in school. Most parents put their kids on the bus in the morning and don’t see them again until dinnertime. When they ask their child “what did you do in school today?” the answer they get is usually brief, something like “not much” or “the usual.” Even worse is, “nothing.” As teachers, we want parents to be interested in their child’s school. We cannot expect this from them if they don’t even know what is going on. This excerpt was taken from research done by the National Education Association on why it is important for parents to know what is going on in their child’s school: 

“Here are just some of the reasons it is important for parents to be actively involved in their child's education:

1.When parents are involved in their children’s education at home, they do better in school. And when parents are involved in school, children go farther in school—and the schools they go to are better (Henderson and Berla).

2.The family makes critical contributions to student achievement from pre-school through high school. A home environment that encourages learning is more important to student achievement than income, education level or cultural background (Henderson and Berla). 

3.When children and parents talk regularly about school, children perform better academically (Aston & McLanahan, 1991; Ho & Willms, 1996; Finn, 1993).

4.Three kinds of parental involvement at home are consistently associated with higher student achievement: actively organizing and monitoring a child’s time, helping with homework and discussing school matters (Finn, 1998).

5.The earlier that parent involvement begins in a child’s educational process, the more powerful the effects (Kathleen Cotton and Karen Reed Wikelund. "Parent Involvement in Education," Research You Can Use. NW Regional Educational Laboratory).

6.Positive results of parental involvement in their children's schooling include improved achievement, reduced absenteeism, improved behavior, and restored confidence among parents in their children's schooling (Institute for Responsive Education. The Home-School Connection: Selected Partnership Programs in Large Cities. Boston: Author.)” (National Education Association 2003).


Mary Ann Graziani is an on-line educator and long-term substitute teacher in the Detroit Public Schools.  She has published an educational book for elementary school-aged children using high frequency sight words, and am in the process of publishing an entire set that goes with that book.   She has also written a math tale that teaches customary units of measurement to elementary school-aged children in an entertaining storybook tale.   You can  contact Mary Ann at: mgrazi@wowway.com


Check out our selection of past articles, including more about school features, 
from previous issues at:


Be Sure to Check Out 
Our Website Store for Specials:




Mastering Basic Skills software:


There are six modules designed to test the basic ability of an individual in terms of Memory & Concentration. Needless to say this is the most important basic skill for not just to survive but also to thrive in this competitive environment. Each of the six modules tests the six variants of Memory & Concentration in an individual, namely: 1. Picture recognition
2. Paired Associate Learning
3. Immediate Recall
4. Serial processing
5. Parallel processing
6. Recognition and Recall
Each of these modules runs at three different levels, from easy to difficult.

At each level, the individual's performance is depicted as Scores Obtained.

A feedback has been built into the software for all these 18 levels depending on the marks one scores during the test. 

Each individual can assess his/her performance any time by clicking on "history", which gives complete details of date and time of taking the tests, marks scored each time and even time taken to do the test. This builds the confidence level and encourages more participation to eventually culminate in improvement and enhancement of memory and concentration.

Essentially, this software is a SELF AWARENESS tool that surely motivates the individual to realize one's capability and seek or be receptive for improvement. Also, if repeatedly done over a period of time works as Training tool to enhance their capability.
This software package is specifically designed to help young children to learn basic skills that will help them in school.  Continued follow-up will give these young learners success as they mature.  

Three versions of the software exist: Individual Software on either CD or Online,   Family Version Software, and an Institutional Software package.

StarTeaching wholeheartedly supports and endorses this software.  It will make a difference with your child or student.


Year of the Dogman
A new novel by Frank Holes, Jr.

Part mystery, part science fiction, Year of the Dogman is an imaginative, compelling, and adrenaline-pumping adventure. Author Frank Holes, Jr. takes no prisoners in creating a diabolical creature that leaves the forest to prey on the hapless hamlet of Twin Lakes in Northern Michigan . When night falls, the nocturnal beast, Dogman, scares the living daylights out of anyone he happens upon as he searches for a timeless treasure stolen from a Native American tribe. In the midst of the chaos, a young teacher is forced to put two and two together no matter how high the cost to rid the village of the treacherous man-beast who thrives on destruction and terror.  

The Dogman, a creature of MythMichigan, is an excellent example of modern-day folklore to study in your classes.   


Order your copy by clicking the link below.


New Teachers' Niche: 
A Place for New Teachers, Student Teachers, and Interns

Writing Paragraphs

Writing paragraphs in our school's program means following a specific rubric. We teach the students to use the same format and steps. We follow the five-step writing process, focusing on brainstorming, drafting, and revision. Paragraph writing for us means drafting, which will be full of mistakes and correctible areas (which we can edit later on). When first introduced, students will be practicing writing paragraphs every day until they master the format we use.  Then we will shift focus from format to working closely on organization, then to content, and finally to writing conventions.

The first step is brainstorming. We require a specific number of 'triggers' for each topic. Students generally choose between making a web or a list to visually show their brainstorming. For example, our 7th graders must include eight triggers, while seniors must have at least fifteen. You and your school will decide what is appropriate.  Then all triggers are ORGANIZED by order of importance, chronological order, etc. Students are asked to number the triggers 1-8. Of course, students are always encouraged to write down more triggers (sometimes we even offer extra credit for more triggers!). We also encourage students to freewrite as brainstorming. Students look over their prewriting and start using their organized triggers to form the ideas presented in the paragraph.

Students then create a topic sentence (T.S.). This is an introductory sentence which captures the reader's attention and gives the reader an idea of what the paragraph is about. We require students to restate the topic in the T. S. This begins to create flow (the connectedness of ideas and transitions) by using several key words in the topic.

At least three body sentences follow (we require six in the 7th grade). These will include details and examples, as well as data in the form of facts or statistics. Make sure these all support the topic sentence. The body sentences also will include a personal life experience (PLE) which connects the topic to the writer's life or to a real-life situation (7th graders must have two sentences for each PLE). We've found, in particular, that papers with a well developed PLE scored much higher on the MEAP than those without a PLE. The body sentences must connect to the topic sentences, and be sure their details flow in a logical manner.

Finally, wrap up the paragraph with a CLINCHER STATEMENT. This again restates the topic, brings closure to the paragraph, and summarizes the ideas presented. The clincher should leave the reader satisfied that he/she understands what was presented in the paragraph. It may also leave the reader wanting more, and provide a means to find more information. The clincher may also be a transition to another paragraph or subject.

Always have your students write a title for the paragraph. This is really an advanced skill, requiring students to think about what they really wrote and condense down the ideas into a short phrase that must also catch the reader's attention. It's a great skill to practice each time they write.


Q: How long is a typical paragraph required for class?
A: This is always hotly debated among teachers. We have set limits at each grade level, based on what our MEAP requires and a progression up the grades. These minimums ensure our students are forced to include examples and details to enhance the paragraph's supports. Our 5th graders must write at least 40 words in each paragraph (as always, they can always write more). In the 6th grade, 80 words are required.  At 7th grade, students must write 100 words, and at 8th grade it is 125 words. There are also sentence requirements. A 5th grade paragraph must have at least 5 sentences (topic sentence, body/support sentences, and a clincher). 6th graders must have 6 sentences, while 7th and 8th graders must include at least 8 sentences

Q: How much time do we give students to write out a paragraph?
A: The paragraph structure was developed in response to the demands of the MEAP test (Michigan's high stakes test) as well as to our own school's curriculum and class needs. We wanted a structure that could be easily learned and remembered (by both students and staff). It had to be versatile enough (and adaptable) to use at any grade level or course. And it needed to allow for students to make it their own - we believe it promotes students' creativity, writing style, and voice while giving them a structure that nearly guarantees success. Thus, it had to be written in a fairly short span of time to allow for students to proof and edit. Brainstorming & organizing should take no more than five minutes (most of our students can do it in under a minute with practice!). The whole paragraph can be written in fifteen minutes or less (again with practice). We NEVER let these go home, and they're always due in class. Students cannot take their MEAP tests home to finish, remember! Time frames start out longer at first, but then we shorten the time as they become more proficient.

Q: How much do you worry about mistakes in spelling, grammar, mechanics, etc.?
A: Remember, this is drafting. We always encourage the students to be careful about what they write. However, we want them focusing on the structure and the logical flow of ideas. Corrections can be made if/when we revise and proof for a final copy.

Q: Doe the PLE have to come at the end of the paragraph?
A: Certainly not! It should be inserted where it makes the most sense in the paragraph. Think about how that story will fit in the flow of ideas in the paragraph. PLEs can even occur in the beginning of the paragraph; we call these LEADS.

Q: Can a topic sentence or clincher be more than one sentence in length?
A: We try to keep these at one sentence in our younger grades, but as students become more mature writers, it is expected that they will attempt and experiment with developing their own personal style. If a middle school student asked about this, I'd ask back, "Why do you need more than one sentence?" If there is a compelling reason, I wouldn't have a problem.

Interested in FREE writing activities you can print out and use immediately in your classroom? Simply click the following link to our writing page: http://www.starteaching.com/writing.htm

Be sure to check out our website for more great information, tips, and techniques for new teachers, student-teachers, and interns in teacher prep programs. Also be sure to check out our Who-I-Want-To-Be teacher plan for preparing yourself to enter the educational profession.  Simply click the following link: http://www.starteaching.com/free.htm

Want to check out the articles in our Student-Teaching series?  Check out our special Student-Teaching page through the following link:  http://www.starteaching.com/studentteachers.htm


Book of the Month Club:

Lincoln on Leadership:
Executive Strategies for Tough Times

by Donald T. Phillips

Our September BOOK OF THE MONTH award is presented to Lincoln on Leadership, by Donald T. Phillips.  This book is a detailed synopsis of the president's leadership skills, his lessons, and his principles, applied to a troubled America of the 1860s and to today's world.  

Abraham Lincoln may in fact be our greatest American president, and certainly the president who faced the greatest challenges.  He started as a backwoods country lawyer and became one of our most revered and honored leaders.  He completely refused to allow the country to remain divided, and utilized his leadership and his people skills to preserve the Union, modernize the American military, and revolutionize the government.  "In a way, Abraham Lincoln represented the summation of those leadership qualities that had helped to form a nation."  (Lincoln on Leadership, p.2) 

This book is broken up into four sections, vital to those in leadership roles: People, Character, Endeavor, and Communication.   Each section is broken up into chapters which detail a specific leadership skill or ability.  Such timeless strategies such as Get Out of the Office and Circulate Among the Troops, Persuade Rather Than Coerce, Set Goals and Be Results-Oriented, and Preach a Vision and Continually Reaffirm It, among others, are explained using stories and anecdotes from Lincoln's life and experiences.  

One chapter I found extremely valuable was Chapter 9, Lead by Being Led.  Much like a good coach, Lincoln gave away all the credit for success to his subordinates with lavish praise, and he himself took the responsibility for any setbacks and events that went wrong.  Lincoln even took the blame for battles that were lost during the Civil War.  He frequently listened to his advisors and generals in the field, and used their expertise in making his decisions and policy.  He was never threatened by his advisors and subordinates, even when they were more an expert on particular matters.  In fact, Lincoln gave them the opportunity and freedom to take their own initiative.  

Each chapter ends with a list of 'Lincoln Principles' that were discussed in the stories or quotes of that chapter.  These are simply stated in an easy to understand format, and yet this simplicity enables each reader to apply the principle to their own life and leadership situation.  There were many times I read through each list and thought of how I currently use or could benefit from applying each principle to my own life and relationships with other teachers and administrators.  

 “Few people at the time could have known, however, that he possessed all the leadership qualities and abilities necessary to save the Union.  And virtually no one would have been able to predict the unparalleled strength of this leadership - that he would seize upon the very circumstances at hand, created by the crisis of confusion,  urgency, and desperation, to exercise the full power of his office, and to create new limits of authority and leadership for the presidency.” (Lincoln on Leadership, p.9) 

You can order a copy of Lincoln on Leadership by clicking the link to our affiliate, Amazon.com 

Have you read Lincoln on Leadership?  Do you have comments you’d like to share with our readers about this book? Email your responses to editor@starteaching.com. Please type in BOOK CLUB READER RESPONSE in the subject line. Responses will be posted on our website with the StarTeaching Book of the Month Club.  All responses will be proofread, and may be edited for content and space before publication.

We welcome articles and book reviews from our readers.  Do you have a great educational book to share with our readers?  Write up a summary, along with the pertinent book information, and email it to us at  editor@starteaching.com. Please type in BOOK CLUB SUMMARY in the subject line.  Book reviews will be proofread and may be edited for content or space.



Are There Other Teachers in Your School or District Who Would Love to Receive Our Newsletter?

Would You Like to Receive a FREE Gift Just By Giving Us Your Endorsement?

Click the Link Below For More Information:



"The Greatest Wonder"

author unknown

Themes on Life

Our point of view is so important... 

If the Earth
were only a few feet in
diameter, floating a few feet above
a field somewhere, people would come
from everywhere to marvel at it. People would
walk around it marveling at its big pools of water,
its little pools and the water flowing between the pools.
People would marvel at the very thin layer of gas  sur-
rounding it and the water suspended in the gas. The people
would marvel at all the creatures walking around the surface of
the ball, and at the creatures in the water. The people would
declare it as sacred because it was the only one, and they
would protect it so that it would not hurt. The ball would be
the greatest wonder known, and people would come to
pray to it, to be healed, to gain knowledge, to know
beauty and to wonder how it could be. People
would love it, and defend it with their lives
because they would somehow know that
their lives, their own roundness, could
be nothing without it. If the
Earth were only a few
feet in diameter.



See more of our Freebies as well as Special Reports on our website by clicking the quick link below:


Make sure to BOOKMARK our website so you can keep up with more changes and additions through the year.  And feel free to share our site by EMAILING it to a friend.



Email us at editor@starteaching.com

Hit Counter

In This Week's Issue 
(Click the Quick Links below):

Designing and Running A Medieval Fair 
(part 3)

School Features:
The Call For Small Class Sizes

New Teacher's Niche:
Writing Paragraphs

Book of the Month Club

Themes on Life:  
"The Greatest Wonder "

10 Days of Writing Prompts

10 Days of Math Problems

Back To School  Book Sale for Teachers

Website of the Month


Sign up for our 

Don’t be just a Guest! Sign up for our bi-weekly newsletter, delivered right to your inbox! FREE tips, ideas, and articles.

Subscribe Now!

"Years teach us more than books."

~ Berthold Auerbach

StarTeaching Links: 

(Click to access our website)

StarTeaching Newsletter Articles & Archives

Submit an Article for our Newsletter

Special, Limited-Time Offers

FREE Special Reports

Technology Center

Educational Links





Do you have a great TEACHING TIP or ACTIVITY to share?

Are you using an innovative TECHNIQUE in your class?

Have you created WRITING PROMPTS that you’d like to add to our WEEKLY CALENDAR?

We welcome, and are always looking for teachers to share successes, stories, and ideas with our readers.

Submit an article to this newsletter by emailing:


Or click the following link:


All articles will be proofread, and may be edited for content and/or length.


10 Days Of


What are THREE goals you have for the first marking period of school this year?


Describe two to four important steps necessary to accomplish each goal listed above.  


Why is it important to have goals for your school year?


What are THREE other areas in your life you can set goals for the next 6 to 9 weeks? 


What are TWO important questions you still have about something you learned this week in class?


How do you measure SUCCESS in your classes?


What does it mean to be successful?  


Why do people want to be successful at the things they do?


Is success related to our own sense of inner worth?  Why or why not? 


Make up a short, 5 question True/False quiz to cover this week's class information.


10 days of writing prompts


Are there other teachers in your district who would enjoy this FREE newsletter delivered to them bi-weekly? 

YOU could qualify for FREE offers when referring others.

Click the quick link below for more information:

Teacher Referral


is brought to you FREE 
by the support of our sponsors:

Griswold Mountain 
Brewing Company

Distinguished Products for 
Distinguished Handcrafters

Specializing in Homemade and Handcrafted products since 1996

Check out our selection of homebrew recipes, ingredients, and equipment on our website:


Mastering Basic Skills software:



Year of the Dogman

A New Novel by Frank Holes, Jr.
Now Available!

Are you interested in advertising with us?
Want to reach an audience of thousands each month?  The StarTeaching newsletter is sent out twice a month, and advertising is available on our website.
Click the link below for more information:
Advertise with Us!





Be sure to check out our
Website of the MONTH



Coming Soon:

Designing and Running a Medieval Fair

Technology & Teaching: Exactly What Are Our Kids Learning?

Discipline Procedures in School

Teaching the Writing Process


Are You Looking For a Teaching Job?

Need a position in a K-12 school, administration, or a coaching job?  Our website has just gained access to a specialized service just for our members and newsletter readers.  Job listings, application and interviewing tips, and priceless information, at your fingertips!

Click here if you want to find that Teaching Job!


10 Days of 
Math Problems
by Mary Ann Graziani

Day 1


















































































Solve the Sudoku Puzzle:

Fill every row, every column and each box with nine different digits.
Day 2 Standard Notation:

Write six hundred fifty-four thousand, three hundred twenty-one in standard notation.

Day 3 Expanded Notation:

Write the number six hundred fifty-four thousand, three hundred twenty-one expanded notation 3 different ways. 

Day 4 Square, Triangular, and Rectangular Numbers:

Organize dots to form squares numbers with the numbers 4, 9, and 16.

Example: A square number four would look like this:
.  .
.  .

Day 5

Form triangular numbers from the numbers 3, 6, and 10

Day 6

Form Rectangular numbers from the numbers 6,8, and 12

Day 7


Palindromes are numbers that are the same read forward for backward.  You can create your own number palindromes using addition. 
    1. First pick a number
    2. then reverse its digits to create a new number
    3. next add the two numbers
    4. Now you’ve created a number palindrome! 
    5. Sometimes you’ll have to keep reversing and adding to create the palindrome.

Create 5 palindrome numbers.

Day 8 Square Root:

Find the square root of 16:

Find the square root of 9:

Find the square root of 4

Day 9 Integers: Solve the Integers:

11 + -6 + 4 + -2 =

-11 + -6 + -4 + -2 =

Day 10


Leslie has to find the perimeter of a rectangle.  The top and bottom of the square is 6 inches, and other sides are 3 inches.  What is the perimeter of the square?




Back to School Specials!
Books for Sale!

(Affiliated with Amazon.com)




Home | Newsletter Articles & Archives | FREE Special Reports | Special, Limited Time Offers | Submit An Article For Our Newsletter

Website design by Carrie's Creations Inc. ©2005