ArtSonia

A colleague of mine passed this website on when I was teaching Grade 4 last year. I always had a million ideas of what to do for Art but I never really focused them or knew how to make them possible for 9/10 year olds. This nifty little website is art projects designed by teachers, run through their classes and then some even post the finished projects online for you to see. I found it so helpful in finding what I needed.
I will advocate for the amazing art museum the have on there. It is fairly easy to search for each level of student you are looking for and even a possible theme. Only downside is that you need to have a free account to access the lesson plans. On the bright side, not very many pesky emails (I’ve been a member for a year and I’ve only gotten 1 or 2). This comes with high recommendations from me (and a few past co-workers)!

Check out ArtSonia!

Apps for Autism

A few of you may have some students who are on the autism spectrum. I’m always curious as to how these students operate in a classroom as I’ve never had the opportunity to work with these students). I thought that this little website gave me a bit of a better handle on how to help these students if I ever come across it in my classroom.

Apps for Kids with Autism

Example:

TapToTalk

TapToTalk

The TapToTalk iPhone app gives your nonverbal child a voice, making it a great fit for many autistic children. Using the app, children can explicitly tell parents, siblings and teachers what they’re thinking about and need. TapToTalk is changing lives because it is portable and customizable if you purchase TapToTalk Designer.

Price: Free

 

Healthy Lunch for Teachers? No way!

I can totally understand how hard it is to eat healthy when you’re running between classes and the photocopier and the office and your classroom and, maybe, the staffroom fridge. Also trying to stuff it all in the minimum amount of time is also a skill. Here are a few tips and recipes (taken from here) that I’d like to pass on to you. To our health!

  • Reinvent Dinner. Leftovers have long been a teacher-lunch favorite—and we get that warm (albeit reheated) food sure beats PB & J. But a Tupperware of last night’s mystery meat sure doesn’t make lunch something to anticipate. That can change. Food blogger Becky Johnson from We Laugh, We Cry, We Cook says that whenever she makes her Sweet and Spicy Mini Meat Loafs, she makes a double batch and puts the leftovers on thick wheat rolls to pack in lunches.
  • Pack a salad.  We certainly aren’t suggesting that you toss some iceberg and ranch into a Tupperware and call it a day. But we love the idea of making a huge and hearty salad and then eating portions of it in your lunch throughout the week. For inspiration, we asked a few food bloggers for ideas and they recommended this Portillos Chopped Salad, a hearty Baked Potato Salad, a crunchy and healthyAsian Cucumber Salad and this decadent Antipasto Chicken Salad. (Oh, and with all those veggies, it only makes sense to throw in a couple bacon muffins as a side.)
  • Do Sandwiches Better. Sandwiches have gotten a bad rap. And we blame bologna slapped on white bread for this undeserved reputation. But it’s easy to do brown-bag sandwiches better. Buy good bread and add your favorite toppings. Then—and this is the key—pack lettuce, tomatoes, onions and condiments in a separate bag so that your bread won’t get soggy.  When lunchtime rolls around, assemble, eat and enjoy.
  • Soup in a Thermos. We love this idea because if you have a good Thermos, you can skip the line for the microwave and get right to eating. Try this Sippable Sweet Pea Soup (that not only looks amazing, but is also vegan!), Creamy Yellow Pepper Soup or even your favorite soup from a can.
  • Try Antipasti. We know antipasti sounds like a fancy restaurant word, but we take it to mean “a whole bunch of little snacks that taste good”. And, with that in mind, chop up some cheese and deli meat, add raw veggies, pickles, olives and some crackers and you’ll have an easy lunch that looks like it was made in a restaurant.
  • Pack Yourself a (Healthy) Dessert. As delicious as Twinkies are, they’re probably not your best option when it comes to a mid-day pick-me-up. Still, adding something sweet to your lunch can provide the energy burst you need to get you through the day. Probably your best choice is a piece of fruit.  If that won’t work, try a “healthy” cookie like these Blueberry Oat and Nut Bars or one of these low-sugar Whole Wheat Pumpkin Muffins. 

Learning List

You know you’re really on to something when:

  1. the activity connects with the world of the learner; it is engaging because they can relate to it.
  2. the activity comes from the learner’s own input; it is engaging because they helped to design it
  3. the activity is based on the freedom to choose; it is engaging because they selected it
  4. the activity is meaningful; it is engaging because they feel that they are contributing something to their school, their community or the world
  5.  the activity is challenging; it is engaging because there is a real problem to be solved
  6. the activity draws the outside world in; it is engaging because it is rooted in the non-school world
  7. the activity is awe-inspiring; it is engaging because it encourages learners to look at their world in a different way
  8. the activity is interesting; it is engaging because it forces the learner to say “huh!”
  9. the activity is interdisciplinary; it is engaging because it involves ideas from a variety of traditionally separate curriculum areas
  10. the activity is expansive; it is engaging because it offers the opportunity for further investigation and learning.

Found on CEA. Written by Stephen Hurley