Category: Reading Skills

Strategies for Higher Order Thinking Skills

Strategies for Higher Order Thinking Skills

Educational trends seem to change almost yearly. One year ‘this method’ is the best thing ever invented. The next year ‘this method’ has lost its appeal, and a new idea is a must try. However, the one trend that has remained constant year after year is higher order thinking skills (HOTS). HOTS encourages learners to go far beyond the memorization of facts. Students analyze, evaluate, and create. So, where do you begin? First, help students understand what HOTS is.

What are Higher Order Thinking Skills?

Bloom’s Taxonomy is as popular today as it was when Benjamin Bloom created the method in 1965. Teach students the six levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy. Also, go over what each level means. Continue Reading

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Summarizing Strategies

Summarizing Strategies - Teaching Ideas + Free Printable Resources

Teaching students to summarize text can be one of the most difficult skills you tackle the during this school year. This post offers six summarizing strategies to try. It also contains some general rules for students to follow as well as stem questions to look for on tests.

Be sure to download the free printable resources to teach summarizing strategies. The link can be found at the bottom of the post.  Continue Reading

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Genre Flash Cards and Boom Decks

Recognizing Genres

Two great activities are provided to help students learn about genres. Genre Flash Cards contains 21 pairs (picture cards with matching fact cards) in a ready-to-use printable format. These are a free download at Teachers Pay Teachers.

Genres, a 40 card deck of interactive task cards from Boom Learning, is sure to be a hit with your students.  Continue Reading

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Teaching with the Animated Short Crow: The Legend

Teaching Reading and Writing with Animated Short Films - FREE Activities

Crow The Legend is a phenomenal animated short film. It features an all-star cast, is beautiful, and teaches a great lesson. Continue Reading

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Academic and Testing Vocabulary

Academic vocabulary consists of words that are not commonly used or frequently encountered in everyday conversation. These words include specialized content vocabulary for specific subjects such as reading/language art, science, social studies, or math. Academic vocabulary also includes terms found on standardized tests  When students understand testing vocabulary, test scores go up. By teaching test vocabulary and how the words look in different forms on a test, students feel better prepared and more confident on test day.

Academic vocabulary consists of words that are not commonly used or frequently encountered in everyday conversation. These words include specialized content vocabulary for specific subjects such as reading/language art, science, social studies, or math. Academic vocabulary also includes terms found on standardized tests.  When students understand testing vocabulary, test scores go up. By teaching test vocabulary and how the words look in different forms on a test, students feel better prepared and more confident on test day.

When to Teach Words

When preparing units of study such as novel studies, add four to five academic vocabulary words in with the novel specific words. Select words based on the skills taught during the unit of study.  Continue Reading

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Johnny Appleseed Free Teaching Materials

Vocabulary from Gay

Not only can you get these free Johnny Appleseed vocabulary activities, but check out a slew of additional apple activities for big kids on my updated apple webpages here.

These webpages include figurative language, facts, and teaching ideas. Apple quotes are great for teaching Common Core figurative language standards. Students can refer to details and examples when explaining what the text says explicitly (another Common Core Standard) with a great list of apple facts. Have students write creatively using apples as a theme. Students can learn to follow directions with the classroom apple recipes.  Continue Reading

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Teaching Reading using the Animated Short The Box

Teaching Reading and Writing with Animated Short Films - FREE Activities

The animated short film The Box is based on real events that are taking place in Syria. The film is meant to educate the world about the struggles the Syrians are facing.  Continue Reading

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