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Mar 252015
 
The Common Core Curriculum Cleaning:  Don’t Throw Out Everything!

When looking at the Common Core, it can seem as if our entire curriculum needs to be thrown out in favor of new materials and methods.  It is easy to see all of the differences the Core presents when compared to our current instruction, and it can be overwhelming to consider all of the changes that need to be made.  But, wait!  Before you say out with the old and in with the new, take a moment to look for pieces in the Core that are familiar and can be taught with your existing methods and materials. For example, there → read more

Mar 192015
 
Web Tools to Help Your Students Shine

When you give students options of ways they can demonstrate their learning, does your list include digital resources for your tech-savvy students?  Here are five ways you can engage students in sharing their knowledge using online digital tools.  All of the tools shared are free to use, yet some require sign-up if you want to save student work. Students can design a newspaper, brochure, flyer, poster, or sign to demonstrate their knowledge about any topic that requires a visual presentation–think character studies, state reports, environmental issues. http://www.readwritethink.org/files/resources/interactives/Printing_Press Students can upload a photo or create an avatar and make it talk → read more

Feb 252015
 
Digital Content for Common Core Standard 4.MD.C.6

One of the most common questions we are asked is how our library of digital content supports the Common Core.  The easy answer is that our entire library has been aligned to the Common Core standards, so teachers can find resources related to each standard.  The more complex answer is that there are many pieces of content that can be used in flexible ways to support each individual standard, and it is up to teachers to choose the content that best supports their lesson and their students. Here are five pieces of digital content a teacher might choose from our → read more

Feb 172015
 

This is the fifth in a series of posts dedicated to helping teachers understand specific changes the Common Core requires them to make in their instruction and sharing how StarrMatica’s content can help facilitate that transition.  The first four posts can be viewed here, here, here, and here. One of the major Common Core Math shifts is that students will be required to use manipulatives and other technology enhanced items to demonstrate mathematical concepts.  One way to assist students with concept development is to help them visualize abstract concepts with manipulatives.  Manipulatives can be anything from hundreds charts to number lines to → read more

Jan 272015
 

This is the fourth in a series of posts dedicated to helping teachers understand specific changes the Common Core requires them to make in their instruction and sharing how StarrMatica’s content can help facilitate that transition.  The first three posts can be viewed here, here, and here. One of the major Common Core Math shifts is that students will be required to demonstrate an understanding of mathematical concepts.  Perhaps the most obvious example of being able to “do the math” without understanding the underlying concept is a student’s ability to correctly add two numbers in a multi-digit addition problem with re-grouping and → read more

Jan 212015
 
Digital Content for Common Core Standard 3.G.A.1

One of the most common questions we are asked is how our library of digital content supports the Common Core.  The easy answer is that our entire library has been aligned to the Common Core standards, so teachers can find resources related to each standard.  The more complex answer is that there are many pieces of content that can be used in flexible ways to support each individual standard, and it is up to teachers to choose the content that best supports their lesson and their students. Here are five pieces of digital content a teacher might choose from our → read more

Dec 292014
 
12 Questions To Ask Before Purchasing Digital Content (Part 4)

(This post is a continuation of our 12 Questions series.  The first three posts can be viewed here, here, and here.) #10 Is there support for the content and are updates provided?Content installations often don’t go as planned.  You will have questions as you begin to use new content, and there may be connectivity issues with web-based solutions.  At a minimum, you should expect a basic level of technical support via phone and email.  You should place even more value on content from companies that go beyond the basics to help you integrate the content into classroom instruction or to assist → read more

Dec 222014
 

This is the second in a series of posts dedicated to helping teachers understand specific changes the Common Core requires them to make in their instruction and sharing how StarrMatica’s content can help facilitate that transition.  The first two posts can be viewed here and here. A major focus of the Common Core is requiring students to answer questions of varying complexity about a variety of texts. Students will be presented with a sequence of questions in which a question is related to and its answer may be dependent on the answer to a previously asked question.  A sequence of questions → read more

Nov 252014
 
Digital Content for the Common Core Standard 2.G.A.3

One of the most common questions we are asked is how our library of digital content supports the Common Core.  The easy answer is that our entire library has been aligned to the Common Core standards, so teachers can find resources related to each standard.  The more complex answer is that there are many pieces of content that can be used in flexible ways to support each individual standard, and it is up to teachers to choose the content that best supports their lesson and their students. Here are five pieces of digital content a teacher might choose from our → read more

Nov 192014
 
12 Questions To Ask Before Purchasing Digital Content (Part 3)

(This post is a continuation of our 12 Questions series.  The first two posts can be viewed here and here.) #7 Who created these resources?It is important to consider the source of content you use in your classroom.  Verify that the resources you are considering are research-based.  Find out whether they were created by educational publishers, teachers, researchers, or a software company.  Would you want a software programmer or graphic designer with no education degree teaching in your classroom?  Is it logical that a researcher should be designing lessons for fifth graders if they have never taught fifth graders?  Educational → read more