6 Strategies for Safer Classrooms as Delta Rises

It’s the kind of news story that keeps parents of school-age children up at night: kids go to school, dutifully wear masks, and still half the class ends up getting sick. That’s what happened this past spring at an elementary school in Marin County, CA. The school seemed to be taking all the right precautions against COVID-19 transmission. They tried to create safer classrooms by requiring teachers and students to be masked while indoors, placing…

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Student Loan Freeze Extended For a Final Time

The current federal student loan freeze — a lifeline pausing repayments interest-free for millions of borrowers in the wake of the pandemic — will now last at least through Jan. 31, 2022. The student loan freeze was first enacted in 2020 and has been extended several times, but the Department of Education has referred to the current deadline as the “final extension” for this relief. With the no-interest repayment pause now unlikely to continue beyond…

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How to Teach Close Reading to Elementary Students

Addressing the differing needs of students can make teaching reading a daunting task. Students are expected to have a deep understanding of what they read and provide answers grounded in text. One way for students to interact with the text is through close reading, which can become a powerful classroom tool for fiction and nonfiction texts across grade levels. Teaching close reading to younger students is very doable–here’s how. SETTING THE STAGE At the beginning…

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10 Ways to Use Color-Coding in the Classroom

Color-coding strategies are fun, but they also wield a deeper value–colors can have a positive impact on memory and attention. Using color-coding is a great way to provide scaffolding for students who need it and engage those who don’t. As a bonus, it can be applied to every aspect of ELA! READING 1. Want students to analyze a text? Ask them to read with color. This color-coding strategy helps them to delineate between a main…

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Secretary of Education Says ‘Politics Have No Place’ in Reopenings

When it looks like the U.S. has the answers to the pandemic, COVID-19 keeps changing the questions. Parents and teachers must now contend with the Delta variant as millions of students starting or preparing to go back to school. U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona says he is paying attention not just as a federal official but also as a father. “I want to make sure that when my children return to school, I’m sending…

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Academic Search Engines for Professional Student Research

Writing papers is par for the course for every student, which means that research is, too. Research helps restore and protect memory and enhances mathematic and problem-solving skills, as well as preparing the mind for a better understanding of concepts and theories. With the vast amount of questionably sourced information on the Internet, it’s hard to know where to turn for quality online research. That’s where these academic search engines come in. Check out our…

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5 Ways to Teach Kids How to Think for Themselves

No one wants to raise kids to be followers who are unable to make their own decisions. In fact, when Claire Lerner, child development and parenting expert, asks parents if they want to raise kids who know what they want and can problem solve on their own, every single person raises a hand. But teaching kids to think for themselves can be easier said than done. It’s not just a skill that starts in elementary…

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7 Back-to-School Organization Ideas Well Worth A Try

Back-to-school organization and shopping is exciting for your kids, but choosing cute school supplies isn’t the only thing you have to think about. As a parent, you have to plan lunches for your picky eater, figure out how to organize the endless amounts of paperwork that comes your way during the school year and pinpoint clever ideas to streamline your morning routine. If you’re feeling stressed about all of these little details, the best way…

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Pros and Cons of Mixing Technology and Homework

Remote school and work have blurred the lines between work and home. How does this shape the debate over technology and homework? Does e-Learning count as homework, since kids complete it all at home? When staring down a backlog of missing assignments, it doesn’t seem like it. Screen fatigue, eye strain, and a growing aversion to technology cast an interesting angle on the debate: how has technology affected the way we view homework? Pros Of…

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10 Back-To-School Tips to Help Students Adjust This Fall

The 2020-2021 school year was unlike any other. Millions of students spent part — or most — of the year learning remotely. After months physically away from teachers, classmates and a traditional school day structure, some kids may need some time to adjust when it comes to tackling the start of a “normal” school year this fall. Here are some practical tips from educators, administrators and counselors to help students adjust to school. 1. Know…

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