FEATURES  FOR   TEACHERS

Visit our Website at: www.starteaching.com

Ideas and Features For New Teachers 
and Veterans with Class

Volume 4, Issue 8

April 2008

StarTeaching Store Advertise with us Previous Articles Submit an Article FREE Reports Feature Writers New Teacher's Niche Tech Center  
 

Welcome StarTeaching's bi-monthly newsletter, 
Features for Teachers!
Over 100 Issues and still going strong!  
Great Ideas and Features for all Teachers!   

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Remember to bookmark this page and to visit our website for more great articles, tips, and techniques!
http://www.starteaching.com

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

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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 science activities for students and teachers to use.  

We are also posting an opening for a Feature Writer to submit a regular article each month on an educational topic. 

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

  Reader Response

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Ask Dr. Manute

Dr. Manute is a well-renowned world traveler, guest speaker, and educational consultant.  

Dr. Manute holds multiple degrees in several educational fields. He has taught in both stateside and international school communities.  He has extensive experience (25 years) in school administration.  He also has worked at the university level, supervising teacher interns and teaching undergraduate courses.

As part of our NEW! Reader Response selection (asked for by our subscribers), we are pleased to have Dr. Manute answer questions from our readers.  

 
 You can  contact Dr. Manute through the form at the end of this article.  Thanks!

A look at Multiple Learning Styles:
Dear Dr. Manute, 

I am an early elementary teacher and at a recent staff meeting our Principal urged our team to be innovative with our lessons, specifically utilizing multiple learning styles. Each member of our team is researching multiple learning style according to a specific discipline, mine being science. What do you think? 

JG, Kansas City, MO

Dear JG, 

“I applaud your Principal for her stance and your team for approaching this in a professional manner. Multiple Intelligence theory is not new and has enjoyed somewhat of a resurgence in the past few years. Research indicates students learn in different ways. Some are visual or verbal learners, others are musically or artistically inclined while others learn effectively using bodily motion or working within a group. Still others exhibit a tendency toward mathematical structure and some learn best by themselves. 

Research also points out there is a dominant learning style in each of us and yet we all have some of each style. Experts say that explains the world class musicians and athletes. 

To address your question I'll refer to a 2nd grade science lesson I observed a few years ago. The teacher began with a question leading to a class discussion focusing on the Planets (Interpersonal). He then displayed pictures of planets (visual) and explained (verbal) their rotation (logical/mathematical). At this point he asked the students to close their eyes and try to visualize the movement (Intrapersonal) of the planets. He did a quick check of understanding then explained they would go into the multi purpose room and actually act out the rotation. Talk about excitement, the students were totally charged! 

In the multi purpose room students were assigned a specific planet with the instructor providing directions. I was totally amazed as they moved (Bodily/Kinesthetic) through the activity. Throughout, he stopped and verbally checked their understanding. 

They returned to the classroom and processed what they had learned. There is no doubt in my mind that the students met the lesson objective. By utilizing multiple intelligence theory at different stages in the lesson more students were reached resulting in an increase in learning. 

I urge your team to explore MI and experiment with it in your daily teaching. The interest and excitement created will be tremendous and student achievement will increase. Isn't that what we are striving for? 

Good luck and good teaching!

Dr. Manute

 

Submit your questions to Dr. Manute on Educational Issues!  Simply fill in the form below:

Name: 

Email: 

Type in your question or query below:

 

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Write What You See

By: Hank Kellner

To be published by Cottonwood Press in January, 2009, Write What You See is a collection of 99 photographs designed to stimulate student writing at many levels. “Each entry in the book presents not only a photo, but also written prompts that will encourage students to use their imaginations to write either narrative or expository pieces,” writes Kellner.

    The page-in-progress shown below is an example of an exercise that uses several quotations, an abstract image, and a poem to initiate a creative writing exercise.

    As of this date, seventeen teachers of English at all levels have contributed ideas to include in a special “How Some Teachers Use Photographs To Stimulate Writing” section of Write What You See. Here are a few examples. 

“One of the projects I’m most proud of is a project I do with my high school freshman,” writes Jennifer Sluss, Co-Director of the Mountain Writing Project. To help teach purpose and audience in writing, Sluss’s students create visual personal narratives/memoirs that she fondly refers to as the Me Mini Movie. In this exercise, students compile photos that tell a story or present an aspect of their lives that they value. “We then add songs to the photos in Movie Maker or Power Point. When we do this, the students must focus on matching the music to their message. We also talk about tone, audience, and the purpose of the Me Mini Movies.” Sluss also uses representations of abstract art to help her students relate to the themes and plots of novels.                                   

                                                                                                       

At the Prairie Lands Writing Project, Teacher Consultant Mary Lee Meyer asks her high school students to write “I Am From” poems based on photos that are significant to them in terms of their lives. To support this activity, she asks such questions as Where are you from? Who are/were your grandparents or great grandparents? What occupations did some of your ancestors have? Meyer has also used this exercise at a writing institute for teachers. You can see samples at http://www.missouriwestern.edu /plwp/wtca/examples.htm under “Writing Marathon Example 1 Addie” and at http://www.missouriwestern.edu /plwp/wtca/examples.htm under “Example 1 Michele.”                                                                                            

    Frank Holes, Jr. is the editor of Star Teaching and an English teacher at Inland Lakes Middle School, Indian River, Michigan.  Holes shows his students photographs of children performing daily activities and asks them such questions as Who is the child? What is his/her name? What is the subject’s family like? How old is the subject? What is he or she feeling? “I also ask the students to give a full description of the setting that includes sense impressions,” writes Holes. Then he asks questions related to a possible plot before he directs the students to write a story that places the child in the setting.     

      If you’ve used photographs to stimulate writing in the classroom and would like to share a successful activity with others, Kellner would like to hear from you. Contact him at hankpix@yahoo.com. Please include your name, school/organization, and city/state.

    Page-in-Progress, Write What You See by Hank Kellner (Cottonwood Press, due out January 2009)

    Copyright © 2008 Hank Kellner

    “The American flag is the symbol of our freedom, national pride, and history.”
    Mike Fitzpatrick, American politician

    “Mickey Mouse is, to me, a symbol of independence.”
    Walt Disney, American cartoonist/filmmaker

    “Light is the symbol of truth.” 
    James Russell Lowell, American poet

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Signs and Symbols 

    A sign can stand for one thing,
    As in Stop or Slow, or Go.
    A symbol, on the other hand,
    As many people know
     Can stand for almost anything
    From happiness to woe.

                                   Jerry Kato

    What is your interpretation of this photograph? Turn it upside down and sideways for different views.                                                                            

     


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2. Paired Associate Learning
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At each level, the individual's performance is depicted as Scores Obtained.

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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.  

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  School Features

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Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
(part 2)

Courtesy of K12Academics.com

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a psychiatric disorder; more specifically, it is an anxiety disorder. OCD is manifested in a variety of forms, but is most commonly characterized by a subject's obsessive, distressing, intrusive thoughts and related compulsions (tasks or rituals) which attempt to neutralize the obsessions.

Obsessions are thoughts and ideas that the sufferer cannot stop thinking about. Common OCD obsessions include fears of acquiring disease, getting hurt, or causing harm to someone. Obsessions are typically automatic, frequent, distressing, and difficult to control or put an end to. People with OCD who obsess about hurting themselves or others are actually less likely to do so than the average person.

Compulsions refer to actions that the person performs, usually repeatedly, in an attempt to make the obsession go away. For an OCD sufferer who obsesses about germs or contamination, for example, these compulsions often involve repeated cleansing or meticulous avoidance of trash and mess. Most of the time the actions become so regular that it is not a noticeable problem. Common compulsions include excessive washing and cleaning; checking; hoarding; repetitive actions such as touching, counting, arranging and ordering; and other ritualistic behaviors that the person feels will lessen the chances of provoking an obsession. Compulsions can be observable — washing, for instance — but they can also be mental rituals such as repeating words or phrases, or counting.

Most OCD sufferers are aware that such thoughts and behavior are not rational, but feel bound to comply with them to fend off feelings of panic or dread. Because sufferers are consciously aware of this irrationality but feel helpless to push it away, untreated OCD is often regarded as one of the most vexing and frustrating of the major anxiety disorders.

In an attempt to further relate the immense distress that those afflicted with this condition must bear, Barlow and Durand (2006) use the following example. They implore readers not to think of pink elephants. Their point lies in the assumption that most people will immediately create an image of a pink elephant in their minds, even though told not to do so. The more one attempts to stop thinking of these colorful animals, the more one will continue to generate these mental images. This phenomenon is termed the "Thought Avoidance Paradox”, and it plagues those with OCD on a daily basis, for no matter how hard one tries to get these disturbing images and thoughts out of one's mind, feelings of distress and anxiety inevitably prevail. Although everyone may experience unpleasant thoughts at one time or another, these are usually warranted concerns that are short-lived and fade after an adequate time period has lapsed. However, this is not the case for OCD sufferers.

People who suffer from the separate and unrelated condition obsessive compulsive personality disorder are not aware of anything abnormal about themselves; they will readily explain why their actions are rational, and it is usually impossible to convince them otherwise. People who suffer from OCPD tend to derive pleasure from their obsessions or compulsions, while those with OCD do not feel pleasure but are ridden with anxiety. OCD is ego dystonic, meaning that the disorder is incompatible with the sufferer's self-concept. Because disorders that are ego dystonic go against an individual's perception of his/herself, they tend to cause much distress. OCPD, on the other hand, is ego syntonic — marked by the individual's acceptance that the characteristics displayed as a result of this disorder are compatible with his/her self-image. Ego syntonic disorders understandably cause no distress. This is a significant difference between these disorders.

Equally frequently, these rationalizations do not apply to the overall behavior, but to each instance individually; for example, a person compulsively checking their front door may argue that the time taken and stress caused by one more check of the front door is considerably less than the time and stress associated with being robbed, and thus the check is the better option. In practice, after that check, the individual is still not sure, and it is still better in terms of time and stress to do one more check, and this reasoning can continue as long as necessary.

Not all OCD sufferers engage in compulsive behavior. Recent years have seen increased diagnoses of Pure Obsessional OCD, or "Pure O." This form of OCD is manifested entirely within the mind, and involves obsessive ruminations triggered by certain thoughts. These mental "snags" can be debilitating, often tying up a sufferer for hours at a time. As of 2004, specialists continue to make headway. It is believed by many that Pure O OCD is in fact more prevalent than other types of OCD, although it is likely the most underreported as it is not visibly apparent, and sufferers tend to suffer in silence. In this disorder, the sufferer tries to "disprove" the anxious thoughts through logic and reasoning, yet in doing so becomes further entrapped by the obsessions. "Pure O" OCD is thought to be the most difficult form of OCD to treat.

Some OCD sufferers exhibit what is known as overvalued ideas. In such cases, the person with OCD will truly be uncertain whether the fears that cause them to perform their compulsions are irrational or not. After some (possibly long) discussion, it is possible to convince the individual that their fears may be unfounded. It may be extra difficult to do ERP therapy on such patients, because they may be, at least initially, unwilling to cooperate.

OCD is different from behaviors such as gambling addiction and overeating. People with these disorders typically experience at least some pleasure from their activity; OCD sufferers do not actively want to perform their compulsive tasks, and experience no pleasure from doing so.

OCD is placed in the anxiety class of mental illness, but like many chronic stress disorders it can lead to clinical depression over time. The constant stress of the condition can cause sufferers to develop a deadening of spirit, a numbing frustration, or sense of hopelessness. OCD's effects on day-to-day life — particularly its substantial consumption of time — can produce difficulties with work, finances and relationships.

The illness ranges widely in severity. OCD is not curable, but it can be treated with anti-depressants. This illness affects millions of people worldwide, and the number keeps growing.

 

 

Article courtesy of K12Academics.com

K12Academics.com

 

Check out our selection of past articles, including more about groups and stations, from previous issues at:

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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.   

http://www.dogman07.com

Order your copy by clicking the link below.

Teachers:
We now have special offers on Classroom Sets of our Novel.  Click here for more information:

ORDER A CLASS SET 

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

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Poetry That Can Be Used In Any Class

by Frank Holes, Jr.
Middle School Teacher

Poetry need not be confined to the realms of the dust-covered tomes of your high school English department. And you need not be afraid or intimidated by poetry; anybody can write fun (and yet educational) poems. As the following activity will show, this form of writing can bring an invigorating style to your ordinary classroom activities, regardless of your subject area or your students' grade level.

Poetry, for those not totally familiar with the conventions of the language-arts classes, is a generic term for forms of writing using highly specific words and phrases to instill images in the reader's mind. Some poetry follows particular forms and patterns, and other types of poetry can be free flowing. Poetry can be simply individual (though connected) words or phrases, or found in complete sentences.  As you can see, there is no limit to the types of poetry that can be created.

Short, simple poems require a great deal of student thought, because the kids must carefully choose the best words to fit the poem. These can be fun for students to write as reviews for tests or the end of chapters. You could also use them to in place of your normal writing assignments to add variety.

Feel free to change the poem form to suit your activity or class. For example, you may want to change the number of details or examples, or the number of lines. If you have creative (or advanced) students, you may even want to require the lines to rhyme.

Here's a short, simple poem form:
Name the topic
List three details, facts, or examples
Creatively describe each
Restate the topic in a new way

A Poem for Science:
The Water Cycle:
Water molecules, H-2-0,
Down goes Rain, Hail, Snow,
Raised up to the sky by the sun,
In clouds they gather for fun,
Ready to drop once more,
Changes in matter are a chore!

A Poem for P.E.:
Gym Class:
Run, jump, play!
We exercise every day.
Indoors or out,
We love to yell and shout!
Phys-ed is our favorite class.

Here's another simple form for those of you with language-arts savvy:
1 Noun (your TOPIC)
2 adjectives that describe your Noun
3 verbs (your Noun in action)
1 adverb for each verb (describe each action)
A real-life example of your Noun, a simile or metaphor, or a synonym
for your first Noun

Turtle:
Green, Old
Walking, eating, swimming
Slowly, peacefully, gracefully
Nature's little armored car

Daisy:
Slim, Bright
Growing, sprouting, flowering
Upward, outward, gently
A little sun on the Earth

Have your students add hand-drawn pictures to accompany the poems, and you've got authentic, artful work that is ready to put up in your room or hallway for parent-teacher conferences.

 

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


 

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

 

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"How Old Are You?"

Themes on Life

How old do we see ourselves as?

If we did not know our age, some of us would appear to be very young, and some of us would seem very old.

Sometimes, people use age as a convenient excuse. "I'm too old to start something new", or, "I couldn't learn that at my age." Other people, though, go on to achieve their greatest accomplishments in life in later years.

Take, for example, Colonel Harland Sanders who started franchising his chicken outlets when he was 65 years old. Up to the age of 90 years old he traveled 250,000 miles a year visiting KFC franchises. He not only overcame personal and business adversities, but more importantly, he didn't let age stand in his way!

Feelings lead to attitudes, attitudes become beliefs, and beliefs become the basis for actions.

It is not important how old you are;
it is how you feel, how you think,
and what you do that is important.

To quote Satchel Paige, "How old would you be if you didn't know how old you was?"

 


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

Reader Response: Ask Dr. Manute:
Multiple Learning Styles

Write What You See

School Features: 
Obsessive - Compulsive Disorder (part 2)

New Teacher's Niche:
Poetry That Can Be Used In Any Class

Themes on Life:  
"How Old Are You"

10 Days of Writing Prompts

10 Days of Math Problems

Spring Book Sale for Teachers

Book of the Month Club


 

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THIS IS

IDEA CENTRAL:

THE PLACE FOR ALL TEACHERS!

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:

editor@starteaching.com

Or click the following link:

SUBMIT AN ARTICLE

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

 

10 Days Of
Writing 
Prompts 

Day
1

What is a natural disaster?

Day
2

Describe THREE different natural disasters. 

Day
3

How does a natural disaster change the world?

Day
4

What are FIVE ways that a natural disaster affects human life?

Day
5

What are THREE jobs that will use something we learned in class today? 

Day
6

Why do humans explore space?

Day
7

What are FIVE important things humans hope to learn from studying space?

Day
8

How has the study of space changed in the last fifty years?

Day
9

What will we learn about space that will affect life on earth?

Day
10

Describe ONE thing we learned in class as if you were to teach it to an elementary student.   

 

10 days of writing prompts

 

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Mastering Basic Skills software:

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Year of the Dogman


A New Novel by Frank Holes, Jr.
Now Available!
click here for more info

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Performance Appraisals
Made Easy

By Dr. Lisabeth S. Margulus

 

 

Coming Soon:

Preparing for Student Teaching

Technology & Teaching: Seamless Integration into Curriculum

Getting Ready for Next Year

Setting Up Your Classroom


 

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10 Days of 
Math Problems
by Mary Ann Graziani

Day 1

Using the numerals 1, 9, 9 and 6, mathematical symbols +, -, x, :, root and brackets create the following numbers:
29, 32, 35, 38, 70, 73, 76, 77, 100 and 1000.
All the numerals must be used in the given order (each just once) and without turning upside down

Day 2 Can you use all 9 numerals - 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 a 9 - above and below a fraction symbol in a random order, to create a fraction equaling 1/3 (one third)?
Day 3

What mathematical symbol can be put between 5 and 9, to get a number bigger than 5 and smaller than 9?

Day 4

Design a figure using symmetry on the triangle grid below:

http://math.rice.edu/~lanius/images/smtria.gif

Day 5

Find the last three numbers in the pattern:

4.    4, 6, 10, 18 ___  ____  ____

Day 6

Find the last three numbers in the pattern:

4.    13, 12, 11, 10, ___  ____  ____

Day 7

Find the last three numbers in the pattern:

65, 33, 17, 9, ___  ____  ____

Day 8

Find the last three numbers in the pattern:

4, 8, 12, 16, ____  ____   ____

Day 9 Find the last three numbers in the pattern:

12,  2, 4, 8, 16, ____   _____  ____

Day 10

Find the last three numbers in the pattern:

7, 11, 15, 19, ___  ____  ____

 

 

 

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Books for Sale!

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